In light of its increasing military spending, Algeria is considering diversifying its partners in the field of defense and arms purchases.
In this context, the Director of Armaments at the Italian Ministry of Defense, General Luciano Portolano, is currently on an official visit to Algiers, where he held meetings with local military officials and discussed the situation in the region, especially in Libya and Mali.
In a statement, the Algerian Ministry of Defense said that its secretary-general, Major General Mohammed Al-Saleh Benbisha, held talks on Thursday with the Portolano, in the presence of the director of Military Industries and the head of Foreign Relations and Cooperation.
Algiers and Rome maintain continuous consultation in the fight against terrorism and illegal migration.
The two military officials had attended in March 2022 the 12th session of the Algerian-Italian Joint Committee for Cooperation in the Field of Military Industry and Defense, at the National Army Club in the Algerian capital.
The Ministry of Defense said at the time that the meeting “constituted an opportunity to exchange views and enhance coordination and joint action between the armies of the two countries.”
Italian Nova Agency (Agenzia Nova) quoted a website specialized in the defense industries sector, as saying that Algeria had asked Rome for a new amphibious transport unit, within the framework of a potential cooperation agreement between the two countries.
In the context of doubling Italy’s import of Algerian gas, following the interruption of Russian gas since the outbreak of the war in Ukraine, several agreements were signed during a visit by Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni to Algiers in January.
The agreements also covered cooperation in micro-enterprises, food and textile industries, infrastructure, public works, pharmaceuticals, the navy, as well as space industries.
In remarks during the visit, President Abdelmadjid Tebboune said that the volume of trade exchange increased from $8 billion in 2021, to $16 billion last year.