Monday, 6 June 2011

Algeria: Business changes on the way

Amendments to the 2009 Finance Act, designed to make investment for foreigners easier, are now anticipated. Meanwhile, however, and we believe that it was as a result of this pressure from France and local Algerian businesses, Prime Minister Ouyahia presided over three-party talks on 28th May: the government, business associations and employees in the form of the government's compliant General Union of Algerian Workers (UGTA).

The participants – i.e. the government – have agreed to introduce a whole range of changes designed to ease the stifling hand of government and administrative incompetence and its mountain of red tape.

The most important change will be the abolition of the Credoc system which requires all importers to pay the amount of their order to an official bank account, from where it was transferred to the seller upon receipt of the goods in Algeria. At best this usually involves a waiting time of some three months, usually many more, thus making it almost impossible for many local businesses to import. According to a statement issued after the meeting, this measure "is intended to help manufacturing companies obtain supplies more easily".

If manufacturers need to import goods urgently, they "will be able to resort to free payment of up to 4 million dinars (40,000 Euros) rather than 2 million dinars (20,000 Euros), as was previously the case." A range of changes are also to be made relating to debt arrangements, especially restructuring arrangements, between banks and SMEs designed to make life much easier for the latter.

or more news and expert analysis about Algeria, please see Algeria Focus and Algeria Politics & Security.

© 2011 Menas Associates

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