|Wednesday, 26 September 2012 12:18|
|Please visit algeria skyscrapper city
Bab Ezzour in Algeria
Archive for September, 2012
|Wednesday, 26 September 2012 12:18|
|Please visit algeria skyscrapper city
Bab Ezzour in Algeria
La société maghrébine de fabrication de moteurs thermiques, Sakmo, a décidé la « fermeture définitive » de son usine à Sakiet Sidi Youssef, dans le gouvernorat de Kef, et son transfert en Algérie.
Le propriétaire de la société, un homme d’affaires algérien, a justifié, dans une déclaration accordée, mercredi 26 septembre 2012, à Express FM, cette décision par les protestations des habitants de la région et les impacts des grèves irrégulières et non annoncées des employés de l’usine.
La société emploie sur ce site entre 500 et 1000 personnes, dans une superficie d’environ 20 ha dont 32.000 m² couverts, pour la fabrication de moteurs thermiques d’une puissance de 6 à 30 CV.
The company Maghreb thermal engines, Sakmo decided the “final closure” of his factory Sakiet Sidi Youssef, in the governorate of Kef, and his transfer to Algeria . The owner of the company, an Algerian businessman , justified, in a statement given on Wednesday, 26 September 2012, at Express FM, this decision bythe protests of the inhabitants of the region and the impact of irregular and unannounced strikes of factory workers . , the company employs about this site between 500 and 1000 people in an area of about 20 ha of which 32,000 m² are covered, for the manufacture of internal combustion engines with a capacity of 6 to 30 hp.
It is fashionable and what is trendy, tablets are now part of the range of the leading manufacturers of mobile phones and computer products, and Condor is no exception with its range of touch tablets now available in Algeria with Condor computer, manufactured locally and presented at the 9th edition of the Med-Algiers it for launch in a month.
Computing Condor is therefore to present its first tablet 10” produced in Algeria running Android 4.0, will be available in 16 and 32 GB Warranty 24 months, the tablet allows multiple Condor connectivity via the port! USB or HDMI with the ability to connect directly to an optional dock. Condor Computer indicates that the price of the tablet will be around 35,000 DA. We will return with more details in our new section.
Argelia’s Ambassador to Peru Mohammed Bensabri. Photo: ANDINA/Héctor Vinces.
ALGIERS] Over the next five years, the Algerian government plans to open its science sector to researchers from mainly developing countries, according to its draft science strategy.
By doing so, it aims to reverse the country’s brain drain, and to regain industry trust in the capacity of public research expertise to produce practical solutions to Algeria’s development and economic health.
Algeria’s previous science strategy, for the period 2008–2012, raised the 2012 budget for research to 1.2 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP)— about three times what it was five years ago, and significantly more than the region’s 0.2 per cent national average.
The new strategy, for 2013–2017, aims to maintain funding at 1.2 per cent, and to tackle Algeria’s key research challenges: reversing brain drain and rebuilding public trust in expertise, in part by tapping into foreign talent. Research geared towards innovation and technological development will also be central to the strategy, which is due to be discussed in the parliament’s current session.
Being more open to the experience and expertise offered by foreign researchers is a challenge for Algeria, said Abdel Hafidh Aouragh, director of scientific research and technological development in Algeria’s Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, during an interview with theAlgeria Press Service last month (21 August).
However, he emphasised that “opening [up] to international talent must also ensure greater mobility for Algerian researchers […] and create numerous partnerships around sustainable projects”.
The 2008–2012 science strategy successfully built a strong scientific research infrastructure, Mokhtar Sellami, director of research programming and prospective studies at the ministry, told SciDev.Net. The main deficit was now in human resources, he said.
Between 2008 and 2012, Sellami explained, Algeria established 25 research centres, 260 well-equipped laboratories, and four experimental stations. It also established a national council for scientific research and technological development, and a number of technology transfer centres.
But the country has only 480 researchers per million citizens, compared to the global average of 1,080, he added. For this reason, “we are working on overcoming all barriers that cause brain drain, such as administrative bureaucracy and the low economic status of researchers,” said Sellami.
Sufyan Akon, a researcher at the University Mentouri Constantine, in north-eastern Algeria, told SciDev.Net that investors have little faith in Algerian research centres’ capacity for producing useful scientific innovation and research, and see investment as “risky”. But, he said, ”bringing qualified foreign researchers to Algeria may strengthen [investors'] confidence in local scientific production”.
Abdel Malek Rahmani, coordinator of Algeria’s National Council for Higher Education Professors (CNES), told SciDev.Net that there was a “fragile situation” because of failures to match increasing student numbers with sufficient lecturer numbers.
Another issue was that university professors — who represent the largest number of researchers in Algeria — were engaged in teaching rather than research work. ”This needs to be changed to make a good use of such qualifications,” Rahmani said.
Working together in the open air, Abu Ahmad’s family uses buckets to empty what appears from a distance to be a pit of crude oil outside the rebel-held Syrian town of Al-Bab.
The source of the winter fuel these farmers will use is not crude, however, but olives.
Abu Ahmad and his clan sun-dry olive paste mixed with water which will supply their stoves as a substitute for heating oil, now unaffordably expensive due to the country’s raging conflict.
“Our ancestors used to do the same,” the 80-year-old says, smiling toothlessly from beneath his keffiyeh, the traditional Arab headdress, and peering out from eyes magnified by his thick glasses.
“When the fighting started, fuel got too expensive. So last year we began drying out the paste again.
“I remember when I was a kid this was the only fuel available to us. It’s called jift.”
Their home in the northeast of Aleppo province lies near to Al-Bab, which is targeted daily by regime air raids.
Women family members, veiled and wearing gloves, happily wade to waist height into the strong-smelling black sludge that fills a hole dug in the ground between rows of olive and pistachio trees.
The women form a chain to pass full buckets of the gooey stuff along to load onto a tractor, helped by giggling children covered from head to toe in the paste.
The menfolk look on as they chain smoke.
They agree to tell journalists about the process, but will not allow them to photograph or film the women.
One of Abu Ahmad’s sons, 37-year-old Mustafa, explains how the olives are pressed then pumped through a hose into a large hole. The paste is covered in water, left during the winter and extracted for drying at the end of summer.
The moist olive paste is spread out on the ground in big square patterns that resemble a freshly painted black oil on canvas.
After a few days in the late summer sun, the paste dries up, cracks and separates into smaller parts which are gathered into large plastic bags.
“In the stove this burns more effectively than wood or anything else, because of the oil content,” Mustafa says.
“We burn it on its own or with logs. It releases a lot of heat, and better still it smells good.”
The price of heating fuel, which was once subsidised, has increased almost tenfold from a pre-conflict price of seven pounds (10 cents) per litre to 65 pounds, or just less than a dollar as summer ends and Syrians prepare for another cold winter.
“Heating oil is cleaner and more practical. You don’t need to go to all this effort to obtain it. But we can’t afford it anymore,” Abu Ahmad says.
“Jift is not sold, it is up to us to make it. We share with with all the members of the family and sometimes give some to the neighbours as well, to those who aren’t able to keep warm in winter,” he says.
A recent report by the African Development Bank (AfDB) asserted that Maghreb integration would help achieve the economic and social development goals of the countries in the region, particularly Tunisia.
The report, published Wednesday (September 5th), under the title “Tunisia, Economic and Social Challenges after the Revolution”, confirmed that there is “great potential for development of regional trade between the countries of the Maghreb, who are natural partners of Tunisia, especially as prospects for expansion of Tunisian exports in these markets are important”.
A unified Maghreb trade area would elevate the volume of economic exchange, not only between Tunisia and the Maghreb countries, but also among all countries of the Maghreb, according to economist Abdeljelil Badri.
“The Maghreb region is among the regional areas that could benefit most from the process of integration among [its countries] because of the advantages and potential it offers and in which it abounds, the most important of which is of course oil,” Badri said. “Further, the emergence of a Maghreb economic group has become an urgent necessity in the current period in order to face the deteriorating economic situation experienced by the international community.”
He stressed that Maghreb trade openness would bring the five countries billions of dollars in additional profits, provide citizens with jobs and become an important attraction for investments, thus increasing rates of economic growth and social development.
The Maghreb is among the least integrated regions in the world, according to AfDB economic expert Catherine Baumont-Keita, who said that the cost of this region’s economic divergence is between 2 and 3 per cent of gross domestic product.
The Maghreb has one of the lowest rates of intra-regional trade in the world compared to other economic groups, not exceeding 3 per cent.
Conversely, intra-regional trade is at 60 per cent in the European Union, 22 per cent among countries of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and 20 per cent within the “South American Common Market known as Mercosur.
Trade exchange between Tunisia and countries of the Maghreb Union rose to $730.6 million during the first five months of this year, according to a report issued by the Ministry of Commerce last July.
Libya ranked first as a destination for Tunisian exports, accounting for $411 million worth, followed by Algeria at $207 million.
However, Tunisia faces a number of economic challenges, according to the AfDB report. To overcome this, the bank called for taking advantage of Tunisia’s current transition phase to undertake reforms that will contribute to establishing a favourable climate for private initiative and business.
In this context, it called on the Tunisian government to develop a culture of entrepreneurship and promote initiative in new activities.
“The adoption of incentive measures for the benefit of new institutional investors will make Tunisia more attractive for foreign direct investments focused on renewal,” the AfDB report said.
It also recommended liberalisation, including in information and communication technology, transport, logistics, distribution and tourism development. The report also pointed to a potential for high value-added profitability if tourism products were improved, including a potential open skies agreement with the European Union to improve air transport.
About 108 Egyptian publishing houses will participate in the Algerian International Book Fair that will open on Wednesday, 19 September. Egypt makes up a good bulk of the fair, considering there are 600 other publishers from 40 different countries.
Turkish firms are to invest US$2.5m in setting up two garment-making facilities in Algeria in partnership with local companies, following the conclusion of a co-operation agreement with the Algerian authorities, a source at Istanbul’s Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has revealed.
The agreement makes provision to set up facilities specialising in lingerie, hosiery and sportswear in Algeria’s Béjaia and Relizane prefectures. They will begin production in 2014.
Organised by the ICC, a delegation of around 50 Turkish businessmen from the clothing trade visited Algeria recently to meet with some of their Algerian counterparts.
There are plans to create a number of joint venture partnerships between Algerian and Turkish firms, with the former holding a 51% majority stake.
The aim is to develop the ‘Made in Algeria’ label and turn out products which are of a high quality and reasonably priced. the ICC source said.
national olympic school in Setif
The effect of Vahid on the national team
Both players Algerian Djamel Abdallah El Mouden Ibouzidène and, from the Academy of Football Paradou AC, have made their debut with the Paris FC on Friday against the Uzès Pont du Gard (0-2) for the account of the first day National (third division French), reported Saturday the site specializes DZ Foot. Freshly landed at Paris FC there five days, the two international junior, both aged 18, were nonetheless aligned coach Olivier Guillou, their former coach at the Academy of Paradou. They played the entire game, as Ibouzidène rear left and El Mouden as midfield runner. A third player from Algerian Academy CAP, Anis Benrabeh in this case, is expected to join his comrades in the coming weeks. Paris FC will play next Friday at Epinal Charléty stadium in Paris, an opportunity for the public to discover Paris the young Algerian players.
It looks like Sellal the new prime minister is instituting if you want to change yourself change your enviroment (Do not litter)
(Reuters) – Kraft Foods (KFT.O) is to pay 1.31 billion dirhams ($151 million) to take full control of Morocco’s top cookie maker, Bimo, from local investment holding National Investment Co. (SNI), controlled by the country’s royal family, SNI and Kraft said on Tuesday.
SNI said it had signed an agreement for the sale of its 50 percent stake in Bimo to double Kraft Foods’ stake in the company to 100 percent.
“This transaction paves the way for a new phase in strengthening Bimo’s leadership and development,” SNI said in an emailed statement, citing Kraft Foods as “top partner because of its expertise and know-how” in the cookie industry.
Kraft said the deal is subject to customary regulatory approvals. A source close to the deal said it expected to be finalized within six months.
In October, Kraft will split into two companies, one focused on cookies and candy in overseas markets and one focused on North American grocery. Kraft said the takeover of Bimo was part of its strategy to grow in developing markets.
SNI will use the sale proceeds to “reduce its debt and fund affiliates’ investment”, the source said.
Unlisted Bimo controls close to 13 percent of Morocco’s cookie sales, a market share that has been dwindling in recent years due mostly to growing local competition and the effects of free trade deals, mostly with the European Union and Turkey.
SNI said Bimo, founded in 1981 and which currently has two production units and 1,400 employees, had sales worth 831 million dirhams in 2011.
Cookie consumption per capita in Morocco is growing fast although it remains among the lowest in the Middle East and North Africa region.
The deal with Kraft Foods is SNI’s third move in what is expected to be a series of transactions involving its stakes in the country’s biggest lender, AttijariWafa Bank (ATW.CS), and Morocco’s sole sugar refiner, Cosumar (CSMR.CS).
SNI, also involved in partnerships with French firms including Lafarge (LAFP.PA), ArcelorMittal and Renault (RENA.PA), plans to focus its future growth strategy on other sectors such as tourism, telecoms and renewable energies.
Kraft shares were down 16 cents, or 0.4 percent, at $40.06 on the Nasdaq.
(Reporting By Souhail Karam; Additional reporting by Martinne Geller; Editing by William Hardy and Sofina Mirza-Reid)
Eliminatoires CAN 2013:Libye 0 – Algérie 1
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A joint venture is to be created by mid-September with the French car manufacturer Renault for the setting-up of a car manufacturing plant in Algeria, Minister of Industry, SME and Investment Promotion Mohamed Benmeradi said here on Monday.
“The commission in charge of the partnership will meet Monday to finalise the agreement so that the joint venture will be created by mid-September,” Algeria’s Press Service quoted Benmeradi as saying to journalists on the sidelines of the opening of Lower House’s autumn session.
Algerian capital will be shared out among the National Company of Industrial Vehicles (SNVI) and the Algerian National Fund for Investment (FNI), with 51 per cenr for Algerian partners and 49 percent for Renault,” said Benmeradi.
The effective manufacturing of Renault cars is expected within 14 months that follow the joint venture’s creation and not within the following 18 months as it was initially agreed,” he added.
The framework agreement on the construction of a Renault plant in Algeria was inked on May 22, 2012 after 15 months of continuous negotiations.
In accordance with the agreement, Renault plant will produce 75,000 vehicles per year, to progressively reach 150,000 vehicles, a part of which will be exported.
Renault plant will be built in Oran (432-km west of Algiers), while the first site the Algerian side suggested was Bellara in Jijel ((359-km east of Algiers).
Algeria was a popular destination for European travellers in the twentieth century, but is currently visited by few foreigners.
Roman sites at Timgad and Tipaza are on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.
Despite the small numbers of tourists, Algeria has a lot to offer, particularly for those interested in ancient cultures. There are many well-preserved Roman remains, such as the site at Djémila, which is described by UNESCO as ‘one of the world’s most beautiful Roman ruins’.
Other places of historical interest include palaces and mosques built by the Ottoman Turks (such as those located in the Casbah and the traditional early towns and dwellings of Saharan communities.
The stunning mountain scenery of the northern regions and dramatic desert landscapes to the south provide visitors with unique escapes from the towns and cities.
Driving in Algeria can be risky, since the country’s roads are beset with accidents. Over recent years, investment has gone into some major new highways, which allow traffic to bypass the more hazardous and narrow local roads.
Traffic police have also been making efforts to crack down on poor drivers and those driving illegally. It is hoped this will reduce road deaths.
The trans-Algerian east-west motorway cost 11.2 billion dollars to build and was the world’s largest highway project for many years. It runs over 1,200km (from Annaba in the northeast to Tlemcen in the northwest).
Other long-term investment is being made to improve the country’s generally poor public transport, with the possibility of tramways in the future.
In 2011, a metro opened in the capital Algiers. Begun decades ago, conflict and economic hard-times long delayed the work. The 10-station metro (6.5km in length) is only the second underground rail system in Africa (the other is in Cairo). However, at a cost of 50 dinars (0.67 dollars) for a single ticket, the price of travelling underground is too high for many locals.
In 1962, when Algeria gained its independence, most children did not go to school and the majority of the population was illiterate. With the formation of the Ministry of Education in 1963, the process of setting up a school system began in earnest.
Today, schooling is compulsory from the age of six years. The basic education programme lasts for 10 years and there are no tuition fees.
Enrolment of children at primary level (6-12 years) is high, at around 95%. This means that over 90% of young people (15-24) in Algeria are able to read and write.
However, with a boom in the country’s population – 27% of Algerians are aged 14 or under, compared to 15% across Europe – schools have been stretched to cope with the growing numbers of children. Class sizes can be large and schools in some regions have to offer lessons in shifts.
The school day is quite long, usually 8am to 5pm. With high midday temperatures, there is normally a break in lessons from late morning to mid-afternoon, when teachers and pupils stop for a rest period.
Teaching is mainly in Arabic, though local Berber languages are also used (since 1999). French is normally chosen as the second language or English from around the eighth grade. The government is encouraging the use of ICT.
Officially, school attendance is compulsory up to 16 years. But in practice many children leave school at 13 (or earlier). There is still a culture among some that secondary schooling is not vital. Poorer families often rely on their children working from a young age.
For those who go on to attend secondary school – around two-thirds of children – there are three lower and three upper secondary years. In the upper three years, students generally study to pass the baccalauréat, which can include vocational as well as academic subjects. Students with good school results can apply to one of the many universities, schools or institutes of higher education.
Kickoff scheduled for Sept. 12 was a first. The work of the project for the construction and ship repair provided at the fishing port of Azzefoun (Tizi-Ouzou) will start on September 12, we learned the company in charge of this project, the Company Algeria-Korea naval service in this case. This project is of paramount importance for the country’s economy, especially since it was endorsed by the Algerian authorities responsible investment issues in the field of Fisheries . This importance has been rightly acquiescée by the Minister of Fisheries and fishery resources, it must be remembered, had wanted to meet the demands of investors to lay the foundation stone of this great site. It took down a job Titan to finally see the project reach this final step to begin the work of this great site. Many hopes and expectations are attached to this company, called to create dozens of job positions for the benefit of local populations. Industry professionals deem necessary infrastructure such specialized in repairing and shipbuilding.Many experts believe that Algeria is in a good position for the development of shipbuilding industry, given its geographical location. The country also has several advantages able to prevail in this field. Needs of the Algerian market of shipbuilding are estimated at 3.6 billion euros over a period of time of ten years. Ship repair it, call needs estimated at around 180 million euros. Ali Ben Mohamed
Nearly a dozen Offshore Call Center evolve in Algeria and employ approximately 400 people.shy The evolution of the sector in Algeria, compared to neighboring countries, has led us to wonder about the profile of people who apply for a job in call centers. To this end, we took for example the call center Ben Aknoun Projetel.During a tour conducted Monday in the center, the first thing that attracts attention is the average age of employees. Does not exceed thirty. By meeting the site manager, Nawal Haddadi, it has confirmed this gives: “The center has 140 telesales with 70% of young people aged between 18 and 25 years and 60% of them are students who work part-time, “says our interlocutor. The Site Director stressed that the mastery of the French language and the first condition to be recruited. ” Candidates must be fluent in French perfectly. They should not have an accent because our clientele is exclusively French, “does she know. He added: “Our service representatives are all a pseudonym because the person at the other end of the wire must be convinced that she is talking to a fellow because of the rise of racism due to the crisis. It is not clear to the client to talk to a stranger. “ On the part of the training, the director of the site is clear: “Each new recruit is a training day. This is an introduction to telesales. Some of our recruits further training of four days, when they are directed towards a specific product, “she says. For Sabrina, licensed in Italian tele-consultant, the decision to work in a call center is made by default. ”Finding a job in my field it is difficult in our country, while working in a call center is better than to be unemployed.” She says: “This is my second experience in call centers. Before, I worked in a center in Bab Ezzouar. “Meanwhile, Dounia, a student at the University Houari Boumediene, says she works in a center during the summer holidays. ”Instead of spending the holidays to stroll, I prefer to work and make a little pocket money. In addition, I am well paid. I have a base salary of 25 000 Da and with the bonus, I can easily have double and it is a good experience. In addition, put on my resume that I have exercised a good thing. “He must know that the center was created in 2007. It has 4 shelves and a production capacity of 150 positions. The center has a clientele exclusively French and some telephone operators. It also offers telesales, taking appointments, insurance and even humanitarian operations. ”Projetel is an offshore call center, a call center outsourcing including French to foreign countries with which it shares some linguistic and cultural proximity,” concludes the director of the site. Djazia SAFTA, freedom
|After the appointment of Abdelmalek Sellal as Prime Minister, President Abdelaziz Bouteflika appointed on Tuesday 4 September, a new government has announced a statement from the presidency of the Republic, read the newspaper 20 hours of ENTV . Part of the former government team was renewed. Ministers who resigned in the wake of parliamentary deputies elected after returning.
Composition of the new government
Abdelmalek SELLAL Prime Minister
AMMAN – Algeria won the first edition of the Arab Championships swimming (senior men and women) that ended Friday in Jordan, winning 36 medals including 16 gold, ahead of Kuwait, which took second place with 21 medals including 9 vermeil.
In addition to the 16 gold medals, the Algerian swimmers have also removed 11 silver medals and 9 bronze.
For their part, the Kuwaiti swimmers won nine gold medals, 7 silver and 5 bronze.
This first edition of the Arab Championships saw the participation of 10 countries, a figure well below the expectations of the Federation of Jordanian swimming when the organizers wanted to make this event a rendezvous swimming Arabic.
Algeria went up in Fifa rankings six points from 34th place to 28th place
Algeria is second place in rankings in Africa.
and first place in the arab world
full ranking at
Two weeks ago I had the opportunity to go to Algeria to assess the state of entrepreneurship there as well as make recommendations as to what to do to improve the country’s startup and innovation ecosystem. I was offered this chance through my role as Embedded Entrepreneur for Project Olympus, one of ourCarnegie Mellon University initiatives for encouraging and supporting entrepreneurship. My visit was sponsored by the Commercial Law Development Program (CLDP), a division of the US Department of Commerce that helps achieve foreign policy goals in developing and post-conflict countries through commercial legal reforms.
Most Americans don’t really know where Algeriais. I have corrected my own geographical ignorance now. Algeria is the largest country on the African continent and in the Arab world. Its southern part includes a significant part of the Sahara desert. Algeria is part of the Maghreb, the countries of Northern Africa. And if you stand in Algiers and look north, you can just about see Majorca, the largest of the Balearic Islands (ok, just kidding, but it is just due south of Spain on the Mediterranean). It’s a two-hour flight to Algiers from Paris; a 45-minute flight from Marseille.
Of course, we in the US are not alone in being geographically challenged. Coming from Pittsburgh I should have known to bring a map of the US. However, I got very good at drawing them on the fly, noting California, Oregon and Washington on the West Coast; Florida, DC, NYC, and Boston on the East Coast; and including Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Detroit and Chicago. Some of them asked and I duly noted where Silicon Valley started and stopped.
Algiers is a big bustling city that looks like Paris with a Moorish touch. The old part of the city, the Casbah, was where the Algerians finally defeated the French after 132 long years of occupation (in 1962). Sort of like our own war of independence, the Algerians won their freedom through knowing the streets and alleyways of the Casbah, attacking by surprise, and being impossible to find or trap. The French couldn’t defeat the wily Algerian guerrillas on their own turf!
French is still the language of the country. It was fun and exhausting but I had worked hard to get my French back up to speed. I had lived in Paris for three years, about a hundred years ago I joked to everyone. I was a bit out of practice, and my vocabulary didn’t include such modern words as “computer” or “Internet” – imagine, how embarrassing to be that old! But I ramped up and graciously accepted their surprise and delight as they realized my French was more than passable. My wonderful translator went home after a day and a half: “Vous n’avez pas de besoin,” he reprimanded me! And the Arabic that they spoke was uniquely interlaced with Frenchisms; I called it “Frarabic.”
It’s kind of funny, but I could tell that Algeria is a startup country. Only 50 years old since independence, they are trying to figure out how to grow and prosper. The country has the oil and gas richness that means that there is little poverty and a thriving middle class. Since independence, Algeria has been largely politically socialist. This shows. They don’t have the entrepreneurial hunger, the drive to initiate the hunt (for customers), the eat what you kill (succeed over the competition) mentality.
Why Algeria? The country is highly strategic to the US. The first country to recognize the US, Algeria has long battled terrorism and is considered a friend and ally of America. Algeria did not participate in the recent uprisings that constitute the Arab spring. In fact, Algeria had its own version of struggles over a 10-year period from 1992 to 2002. Those that I met there were adamant that Algeria would never be led by an Islamic extreme government. Thus, Algeria has been and remains a very important focal point for America, hence the CLDP’s interest in encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship.
It was very interesting to be in an Arab country on the day when Egypt declared that the winner of the Presidential election is the Muslim Brotherhood. I was extremely interested in finding out more about the role of women in Algeria. It had been with some trepidation that I voyaged there, not being sure of how open the Algerians would be to a western woman dressed and acting in a very western way! My fears were put at rest by the excitement and delight I witnessed when people realized that I was from the US. They explained to me how, in Algeria, women comprise one third of government officials (this is mandated by the President), and women are generally very well respected. I observed that the majority of women on the streets of Algiers were in traditional dress (without the full-face burqa) but there were many who wore western dress with heads uncovered. BTW, I have NEVER seen so much blatant wearing of precious jewelry, particularly diamonds, as on the plane from Paris to Algiers on the Air Algeria plane. Talk about bling!
Entrepreneurship in Algeria. In a scene that was déjà vu for me, having been to Portugal four times last year on a similar mission for CMU (see my previous blog post about Portugal and entrepreneurship plus you can search for other New Venturist posts featuring Portuguese entrepreneurs), I noted that Algeria suffers from a similar fate: they have 80% of the entrepreneurial puzzle pieces, but lack a critical 20%.
I met with several pre-startup entrepreneurs, and a few of their mentors and coaches at the impressive ANPT Sidi Abdellah incubator, located just outside of Algiers (ANPT stands for an agency in charge of improving information technology entrepreneurship). I saw energy, passion, commitment, and intelligence among the young entrepreneurs, and witnessed dedication among the coaches. What was missing, and this is the same as what I found in Portugal, was the savoir faire of HOW to do entrepreneurship. Let me cite some examples:
Conclusions. In spite of these shortcomings, I found that the timing is perfect to encourage entrepreneurship in Algeria. The need to stimulate innovation and entrepreneurship has national push from the highest levels of the government. They have the money and the commitment. They have an educated young populace who, like youth all over the world, have heard about entrepreneurs making it big, making a big difference. Why not them? Why not Algeria?
Egypt’s new president said on Monday he would not impose new taxes or devalue the country’s currency and that his government would rely instead on investment, tourism and exports to fix an economy ravaged by a year and a half of political turmoil.
Mohamed Morsy, 61, has a window of opportunity to push through economic change while he still commands political goodwill 50 days into his tenure as Egypt’s first freely elected president, economists say.
Yet he must tread carefully to avoid angering a population that rose up to oust Hosni Mubarak last year partly because of high inflation and the widespread belief that the fast economic growth in the last years of the former president’s rule was not reaching the poor.
Among measures that have been proposed by economists are a reduction in the value of the currency, which has fallen by only 5 percent over the last 18 months despite the drop in demand from tourists and investors.
But asked if his government had any thought of devaluing the Egyptian pound, Morsy said: “No. Definitely not. This is completely out of the question.”
Morsy was speaking to Reuters in his first interview with an international news organization hours before leaving for China, where he hopes to attract investment and improve economic ties. Next month he flies to the United States on a similar mission.
“I am seeking out the interests of the Egyptian people in the east and the west. I will go wherever these may be,” Morsy said, speaking from the ground floor of the presidential palace.
“The interests of the Egyptian people require that we balance our relations with the whole world.”
The anti-Mubarak uprising and its aftermath chased away both tourists and foreign investors, two of Egypt’s main sources of foreign exchange, putting pressure on the currency and helping to widen an already swollen budget deficit.
Morsy’s officials acknowledge the challenge. They say Egypt needs to create 700,000 new jobs a year, a target that will require growth of 6 percent a year or more. That level had been achieved in the last years of Mubarak’s rule, but stalled after he was toppled.
The government last week formally asked the International Monetary Fund for a US$4.8 billion loan to plug the financing gap in its budget and balance of payments.
In the last three months, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the Jeddah-based Islamic Development Bank have pledged Egypt more than $5 billion to help it stave off a balance of payments crisis, but the money will not provide a long-term fix for a hard-pressed nation of 82 million people.
A weaker pound would encourage exports and stop a drain on foreign reserves, which have fallen by more than half since the uprising, to $14.5 billion. Yet it would make tea, sugar and other imports bought by the poor even more expensive. Wheat, a big import and their main staple, is heavily subsidized.
Morsy also ruled out any new taxes, at least in the short term. “There are no new taxes that will be imposed on the Egyptian people during this period,” Morsy said.
“The tax system needs reviewing so that government support reaches those who need it, not those who don’t,” Morsy said. “There is a gradual plan so that taxpayers bear their true responsibility and pay what they truly owe.”
These, he added, would be revisions and not new taxes.
“I am not talking about a sudden law that would impose a tax on the people to pay new taxes without study. We want to reduce the burden on the most impoverished. We want to support the poor and needy,” he said.
The deficit in the new, 2012/13 budget is equivalent to 25 percent of total spending. The government has been relying on local banks for finance, but these banks have run low on funds to lend. This has pushed interest rates on some treasury bills up to almost 16 percent, further widening the deficit.
“We are trying by all means possible … to reduce this deficit, and we envisage that within a few years, within three to five years, this deficit may decrease by a tangible amount.
“The situation now is more stable. The amount of reserves now at the central bank is above the limit of fear, above the red line,” he said.
“The main axis is investment, encouraging investors, tourism, foreign trade, exports. That is what we are aiming for more than loans.”