Algerian Firms Rise To Challenge Of Export Amid Financial Crisis

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As many as 483 Algerian public and private companies of different specialties are exhibiting their products at the 26th National Production Fair in the capital Algiers, amid efforts of the oil-rich nation to export non-hydrocarbon products.

Algeria is suffering from a financial crisis as its foreign reserves have dropped to fewer than 100 billion U.S. dollars, which is in part caused by the oil prices plunge in recent years.

The government has recently banned more than 900 products from being imported, in a move to encourage local production and curb the increasing import bills.

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Private and state companies are encouraged through a set of tax enhancements to level up the quality of their products and ultimately make them competitive enough to be exported.

In fact, several private companies active in the sectors of agri-food and household appliances have already managed to export their products.

Ismail Mehdi, a sale executive at household appliance company Brandt, told Xinhua that the company has managed to export some of its locally made products such as refrigerators and washing machines.

“We have hit remarkable export turnover this year, as we are the first household appliance operator in terms of export,” he said.

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Brandt is set to open a new factory in Setif Province, which is considered the trade capital of Algeria, to export more of its products in 2018, Mehdi noted.

Olive oil is another potential product for export, as some private operators have made noticeable advances in this sector.

Boudjemaa, an owner of an agri-food firm, said olive oil will become a significant wealth source for Algeria, as there are vast swathes of fertile lands that could be used to plant olive trees.

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“All the world is looking for this substance. We have to work more to improve not only the quality and pressing methods, but also attractive packaging,” he said.

Algeria now only exports 5 or 6 percent of its olive oil products, according to the businessman.

Algerian Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia has encouraged local companies, both public and private, to increase their production quality to satisfy local demand and enter foreign markets.

Xinhua

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