Spanish Ceramics Producers Demand from Madrid and European Union Action Against Algeria

date 2017/07/05 views 521 comments 1
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icon-writer Hassan Houicha /*/ English Version: Med.B.

The Spanish Association of Tiles and Ceramics’ Producers of the “Comunitat Valenciana” region called on its government and the European Union to intervene with Algeria and find a solution to the issue of the suspension of exports of these materials since last April after being included in import quotas and licenses, in protest of the great losses caused to these producers. This sector is threatened with extinction, they argued.

The Spanish producers expressed deep concern and concern over Algeria's continued imposition of quotas and import licenses on these materials, according to the newspaper lasprovincias.es, and called on the Spanish Ministry of Trade and the authorities of the European Union to take action in this regard, noting that the Association is working hard with the Trade Representative to the Spanish Embassy in Algeria to find a solution to this burning file and to ensure the return of commercial transactions as in the past.

Concerns about the future of the Spanish ceramics sector are of alarming proportions. The decision of the Algerian government to integrate Spanish ceramics into the products subject to import quotas has caused a panic in the Iberian Peninsula and particularly in the Valencia region known for the concentration of this industry.

Algeria's bill and imports of Spanish tiles and ceramics reached about one billion Euros over the past 10 years (since 2007), which is equivalent to at least 12 billion billion centimes in national currency.

 It clearly shows that Spanish companies found Algeria a profit-yielding market without thinking for 10 years on local investment projects, as revealed by Spanish newspaper lasprovincias.es, citing the Spanish Association of Tiles and Ceramics’ Manufacturers, known as ASCER.

The Association of employers in the Spanish ceramics sector (Ascer) warned against the risks arising from Algeria's recent implementation of quantitative quotas for the import of ceramics. Such a decision, it is said, would be disastrous for a sector of which Algeria is the fifth best customer in the world.

The source pointed out that the level of Algerian imports of these materials was in the range of 27 million Euros in 2007, and it amounted to 132 million Euros in the seven years of 2007 until 2014, while the figure in 2015, reached about 130 million Euros and this figure dropped to 123 Million Euros at the end of 2016.

The paper pointed to the decline in the Spanish exports of ceramics and tiles towards Algeria, because of the adoption of quotas and licenses in April, the volume of exports declined by 80 percent, notably between April and June 2016, with the bill of exports to Algeria being set in the range of 36.43 million Euros, in the same period and starting from 2017, it amounted to just 7.26 million Euros.

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