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    France - Algeria business ties

    The Algerian ambassador in France, Mr. Missoum Sbih, yesterday called on French businessmen and companies’ managers to give greater commitment to reinforcing Algerian French economic relations, affirming that their participation would be better if they definitely abandoned their old positions and changed their attitude towards the Algerian market.

    Mr. Sbih, indicated in a letter addressed to the meeting, organized by the Arab French Trade Room yesterday in the French capital, under the motto “Algeria: perspectives to the French companies”, that “the repeated criticisms of the French businessmen to justify their modest commitment until now concerning the Algerian market do not mean at all the difficulty of investment comparing to other countries”.

    According to the Algerian press agency, the ambassador indicated that Algerian French relations are improving in order to create “a particular partnership in all fields”, showing the economic position of this partnership. He added that “the Algerian part will do its best to answer the demands and suggestions of the French businessman”.

    The ambassador mentioned that “the Algerian market provides important economic opportunities, there is a political will to establish ideal economic relations and partnership” adding that “it concerns the will of the companies chiefs of the two countries to start working in all sectors opened, in Algeria, to foreign investments”.

    The president of the Arab French Trade Room, Mr. Pierre Rozack, affirmed during the opening of the conference’s works, in which representatives of the ministry of Participations and Promotion of Investments and the ministry of Energy and Mines were participating, “the excellent business climate in Algeria” and the social and economic revival and reforms that provide excellent prospects for French companies”.

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    Paris workshop to promote investments in Algeria

    A workshop to promote French investments in Algeria opens on Tuesday (December 19th) in Paris. The event will focus on the food and agriculture, automobile, pharmaceutical and banking sectors. It will be attended by Algerian Minister of Participation and Investment Promotion Abdelhamid Temmar and French Trade Minister Christine Lagarde. The event, organised by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the French embassy in Algeria, is taking place several days after French Economy Minister Thierry Breton's visit to Algiers. An agreement for economic and financial partnership was signed during the visit, aimed at encouraging French investments in the Maghreb country.

    Paris workshop to promote investments in Algeria

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    MEDEF to organise forum on investment climate in Algeria in Paris

    The Movement of the French Enterprises - MEDEF International - will organise a seminar on the investment climate in Algeria for 2007 on January 24th in Paris, Liberte daily reported on Wednesday (December 27th). French Ambassador to Algiers Bernard Bajolet will present the projects and opportunities provided by the 2005-2009 Complementary Growth Supporting Plan, which is expected to reach $120 billion from 2005-2009. The forum will focus on the result of the French presence on the Algerian market and the proposals for economic and tax reforms. Outside the hydrocarbons sector, France is Algeria's biggest trade partner with 200 French companies working in the country, generating 8,000 jobs for Algerians.

    MEDEF to organise forum on investment climate in Algeria in Paris

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    France - Algeria business ties

    May 7, 2007 -- The parent body of the group exclusively dedicated to consumer credit, Sociéte Général, is just waiting for approval to be issued by the Bank of Algeria to install officially its new subsidiary.

    The new company has been baptized Crédal (Credit of Algeria). It will be entirely financed by the head company. It will have no organic relations with the other subsidiary company (SGA). Joel Jarry, President of the SGA (Société Générale, Algérie) told the press that Société Générale will be the second world banking group to set-up in Algeria a subsidiary dedicated to consumer credit financing after BNP Paribas’ Cetelem.

    Crédal will reinforce the offer of the French group in an increasingly competitive sector. Indeed, taking into consideration the statistics of SGA alone, of the bank account holders in SGA, said Joel Jarry, “more than 30,000 are credit consumers,” before adding that ”more than 65,000 have opened bank accounts with SGA”. According to Mr. Jarry, SGA at present has nearly 70,000 customers, including approximately 5,000 companies, 65,000 individuals and a hundred multinational companies.

    Currently, SGA markets automobile consumer credit, loans for property as well as “welfare” and “personal” loans. The two latter are forms of non-affected credit which make it possible to borrowers facing everyday life needs.


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    Des investisseurs privés en colère contre l’Agence Française de Développement


    Les investisseurs et opérateurs économiques de la wilaya de Annaba ont contesté hier le soutien permanent des grands projets et investissements publics en Algérie, par l’Agence Française de Développement, alors que cette dernière ne finance pas les projets des privés et petites et moyennes entreprises.

    Ces investisseurs ont expliqué que les responsables de l’Agence Française ont des craintes quant aux répercussions et risques de la perte des crédits bancaires, destinés aux privés, suite à l’absence de garanties sur les crédits.

    Les investisseurs qui ont participé, avant-hier, à la rencontre organisée par la Chambre du Commerce et de l’Industrie à Annaba, où était présent M. Denis Cassat, Directeur de l’Agence Française de Développement en Algérie, ont contesté la manière par laquelle l’agence Française accorde ses crédits d’investissement. Ces derniers n’ont pas trouvé normal le fait que, dans ces dix dernières années, l’agence Française ait financé des grands projets publics, d’une valeur de 350 millions d’euros, alors que le financement des projets privés ne dépasse pas les 38 millions d’euros.

    Selon un membre de l’Association Nationale pour la Promotion des Entreprises, cela est du aux craintes de l’Agence Française, concernant les risques de l’absence de garanties sur les crédits accordés aux particuliers, qui ont rendu difficile aux investisseurs locaux ainsi qu’aux responsables des PME d’obtenir des financements de ce fond étranger, vu les obstacles dressés par cette agence, qui accorde des facilités aux entreprises publiques pour obtenir les financements de leurs projets, tandis que les projets des privés sont faiblement financés, et une grande partie des financements vont vers les opérateurs privés de téléphonie mobile.


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    France remains Algeria's No.1 supplier; Algerian lobby urges it to invest more

    June 22, 2007 -- France has maintained its position as Algeria's leading supplier, with exports worth 189 million U.S. dollars in May, according to a report issued Thursday by Algerian national center for customs data-processing and statistics (CNIS).

    This figure represents 37 percent of the overall volume of goods exported by Algeria during this period.

    With exports worth 189 millions U.S. dollars, France overtook the United States and China, according to the same source.

    Regarding the principle clients, the U.S. which is one of the major importers of hydrocarbon products from Algeria, remains at number one position with 1.2 billion U.S. dollars, before Spain with 425 million U.S. dollars, followed by Canada with 419 million U.S. dollars.

    Hydrocarbon products remain Algeria's leading exports at 4.1 billion U.S. dollars in May, reflecting a decline of 7.5 percent compared to the same period last year.


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    ALGIERS, June 25 (Reuters) - France should look at ex-colony Algeria as a place to invest and make "big profits" rather than just an export market, a business leader said on Monday.

    "I don't understand why they are still reluctant to invest," Redha Hamiani, president of lobby group Business Leaders Forum, told reporters in remarks about the north African country's attempt to stimulate its weak non-energy sector.

    "Economic reforms are under way. We have a lot of money and huge needs. French investors could make big profits and could transfer their money (home) safely," Hamiani said.

    France is Algeria's biggest foreign supplier, accounting for 20 percent of Algerian imports in 2006, far ahead of its nearest rival Italy on 8.8 percent.

    But France's 434 million euros (581 million) in investment place it far behind Britain and Egypt whose firms have respectively invested more than $4 billion and $2 billion.

    Hamiani complained that only 200 French firms were present in Algeria while in Morocco there were "over 1,000 ... We can do a lot of business with our French counterparts in medium and small firms. They should stop looking just at oil and gas."

    French firms, including banks and automakers, employed 8,000 people in Algeria in 2005, the French embassy website says.

    Hamiani said this was not enough.

    Algeria's economy has grown by more than five percent on a nominal basis in each of the past four years, driven by big energy revenues and state investment in roads, schools and hospitals.

    But the unemployment rate among adults under 30 is more than 70 percent, according to official figures.

    Hamiani, speaking ahead of a visit to Paris to meet French business lobby group MEDEF, said the two countries' sometimes prickly diplomatic relations should not hinder business.

    "We want to build win/win economic relations with France," he said. "We want also the French market to be open to Algerian products," he added, listing food and agricultural products.

    Algeria was invaded by France in 1830 and became a colony. A war begun in 1954 by Algerian fighters cost hundreds of thousands of lives - Algiers says 1.5 million - and led to independence in 1962.

    Algeria's President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who will receive French counterpart Nicolas Sarkozy on a visit to Algiers next month, has made several calls for France to officially apologise for massacres of Algerians during the colonial era.


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