From The Report: Algeria 2015
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Hydrocarbons wealth has underwritten Algeria’s growth for decades, allowing the country to accumulate huge foreign currency reserves and underwrite a major public spending campaign over the past 10 years. However, the dramatic drop in oil prices since mid-2014 has had an impact. Despite GDP growth of 4% in 2014, Algeria also experienced its first current account deficit since the late 1990s, equivalent to 18% of its GDP. In response to this situation the government has made aggressive plans to boost oil and natural gas production, including increasing onshore exploration, starting production on unconventional deposits and reforming the regulatory framework to improve investment attractiveness. A significant acceleration of its renewables targets is also under way to help meet rising domestic demand. This chapter contains a viewpoint from Salah Khebri, Minister of Energy; and interviews with Francesco Starace, CEO, ENEL; and Touffik Fredj, President and CEO for North-west Africa, General Electric.