Seven Foreign Embassies “Inquire” About Sectors Concerned With Abolishing Investment Rule 51-49%
The President of the National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Abdelkader Gouri, revealed that the chamber had received calls from 7 foreign embassies posted in Algiers to request clarifications about investments in the field of medicine manufacturing, car assembling, foodstuffs, textiles and electronics, represented by the USA, France, Germany, Pakistan, India, Turkey and Ukraine, and these embassies also requested information about the organizational base.
The latter inquired about foreign investment in Algeria via the rule 51-49%, which, although canceled through the Finance Law for the year 2020, is still in effect until now due to the delay in issuing the implementation texts specified for the list of strategic sectors that will not be included in the scrapping of the rule.
Mr. Gouri said, in a statement to “Echorouk”, that the foreign embassies present in Algeria began to move to extract investments and deals in the interest of their country in the Algerian market, through the movements of the commercial and economic attachés, stressing that the Chamber of Commerce received calls from 7 embassies asking about the new investment law and its content as well as about the deadlines for the application of dropping the investment rule 51-49%, including the American embassy that is looking at investment in the field of energy, foodstuffs, and mechanics, as well as the German embassy in the field of renewable energies and the assembling of cars.
According to the same interlocutor, the matter is also related to the French embassy, which is always keen to prepare a fertile investment ground for its country’s customers.
According to him, France remains a traditional and strategic partner for Algeria, due to the proximity and presence of a large number of Algerians residing there, who are considered primary consumers of Algerian goods.
He also evoked the Ukrainian embassy, which requested clarifications on the pharmaceutical industry market in Algeria, while the the Turks inquired about the textile and food industry, and Pakistan and India about the food and textile industry.
Abdelkader Gouri also explained that the reason for the very slow pace in foreign investments stems from the delay in issuing the new investment law, which is currently at the prime minister’s table, Abdelaziz Djerad, according to information received by the Chamber of Commerce – and which is expected to include facilities for local investors similar to the possibility of owning the investor’s industrial property instead of renting it.
According to the head of the National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the General Directorate of the Commercial Registry has still applied up to the present time the cancellation of Rule 51-49%, and has not dropped it due to the absence of application texts, in all requests for the introduction of a foreign partner and its commercial registration for any dealer, adding, “We are awaiting the issuance of the investment law that is today on the prime minister’s table, and we are awaiting the issuance of the applied texts specific to the strategic sectors “.
Regarding the vexed car assembly file, Mr. Gouri explained that Algeria suffered losses amounting to 3 billion dollars as a result of “tire inflating” factories in the past, and therefore it is necessary today – according to him – to postpone the vehicle assembling that is not yet due, and to encourage handling, because “It is quite necessary,” as he put it.
30 percent of car accessories were manufactured locally, before assembling factories were established,” he noted to this effect.