Exports and Trade in Algeria
The biggest exports in Algeria are either mined or manufactured in the country. Agriculture plays a comparatively minor role in the country's overall economy. The vast majority of highly profitable mining or manufacturing concerns are owned and operated by the government and Algeria's government also oversees the instituting of economy-related laws and other necessary planning. In recent years there has seen a trend towards foreign investment and an increase in Algerian exports.
Petroleum and natural gases are the country's most important mineral resources. Algeria currently exports about 90% of its crude oil to parts of Western Europe. Its largest gas and petroleum deposits are found mainly in the Eastern Sahara and these are transported to various sea ports by means of pipelines. Algeria also extracts iron ore, phosphates, zinc, coal, salt, uranium and lead.
When it comes to farming, the most fertile areas of the country can be found in the north and in the oases of the Sahara. Algeria's principle farm crops are wheat, oats, citrus fruit, wine grapes, olives, figs, tobacco, dates and barley. Of these, the most notable products are olive oil, wine and other beverages and tobacco. The country is also involved in the export of some construction materials, chemicals, textiles, clothing and metals, but its involvement in this is limited. A number of Algerians farm sheep, chickens, cattle, and goats while a small fishing industry supplies the country with seafood.
The option of exporting large portions of the country's national products is becoming more and more attractive since the annual earnings from exports are considerably higher than that of importing. Algeria trades mainly with France, Italy, the US, Spain and Germany. However, exporting also has a downside in that many Algerians face a decrease in supply, higher food costs and even possible unemployment that is either directly or indirectly related to Algerian exports.