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Algeria Studying to Allow Foreign Ownership in Some Sectors

Algeria Studying to Allow Foreign Ownership in Some Sectors

Thursday, 12 September, 2019 - 09:30
A general view of the headquarters building of Algerian state energy company Sonatrach in Algiers, Algeria, February 8, 2015. REUTERS/Ramzi Boudina

Algeria is looking into allowing majority foreign ownership in non-strategic sectors of its economy, the government said in a statement on state media on Wednesday.

Algeria has prevented foreign investors from holding stakes of more than 49%, and large parts of the economy have remained under state control, Reuters reported.

A government statement announcing the draft 2020 budget included the reform, but it must still go through more layers of approval before becoming law.

Economists are suggesting the sectors could include oil and gas, electricity, transportation, water and telecoms, however, the government's statement didn't reveal specific details yet.

Algeria has been looking into economic reforms in recent years as lower energy prices undermined its fiscal position.

Oil and gas provide 94% of export earnings and 60% of a budget that doles out extensive benefits to citizens.

According to Reuters, mass protests since early 2019 have made movement on economic reforms challenging.

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