Algeria’s Arguments In The Negotiations To Amend The European Partnership

December 9, 2020

The Algerian government’s arguments are in the forefront of the request to review the terms of the partnership with the European Union, as Article 40 provides for the possibility of defending the interests of any country that signed the agreement, if a negative balance of payments is recorded, which is confirmed by the foreign trade data and the Finance Ministry in Algeria, for the years from 2015 to 2020.

Although Algeria exported, for 15 years, $ 400 billion of energy to the European Union countries, it imported much more and did not achieve the goal of prosperity stipulated in the Barcelona Agreement in 1995, which was extensively discussed in the request to review the agreement.

Chairman of the National Association of Algerian Exporters, Ali Bey Nasseri, said in a statement to Echorouk that the decision to review the partnership agreement with the Europeans is an inevitable necessity today, appreciating the first step announced by the Foreign Minister, Sabri Boukadoum, on Monday.

“The European Union is obligated to accept the opening of the debate. This is what the agreement authorizes for any affected country, including Algeria, and it also allows, through Article 107, to dissolve the agreement for any country wishing to withdraw”, he added.

“The most important files that arouse the discontent of the Europeans regarding the Algerian side are the list of products prohibited from import except through a temporary additional fee, which is expected to include 2,600 products, according to what was previously announced by the Trade Ministry”.

On the other hand, he made it clear that Algeria has the right to protect its economy, its balance of trade and the balance of payments in the first place, which is officially approved by Article 40 of the terms of the agreement, considering that Algeria has the right to demand this, especially since it is in a very critical economic situation and will not be the first country to resort to that.

The arguments of the Algerian side are based, according to the head of the Algerian Exporters Association, on the basis that Algeria’s exports outside of hydrocarbons to the European Union are not even 1% of its imports from these countries, while oil and gas exports for 15 years reached $ 400 billion, and its imports exceed this sum.

“Algeria sells oil and gas as raw material and imports it as car fuel and kerosene for planes, which makes the partnership agreement based on a win-lose principle instead of a win-win principle that was agreed upon”.

“The most important countries in the European Union that share economic dealings with Algeria are Italy, Spain, France, and to a lesser extent Germany, which requires not to make these privileges open to all countries but should be limited to countries that share mutual interests with Algeria. The implementation of what was stated in the Barcelona Process of 1995, which resulted in the European Partnership Agreement, is necessary, as the Process provides for achieving prosperity, which Algeria did not achieve, according to the figures that followed the Association Agreements”, he explained.

“Any country that does not achieve the expected goals of the partnership with the European Union has the right to request the termination of the agreement, which is provided by Article 107 of its provisions”.


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