September 23, 2019 / 8:56 PM / 2 months ago

Algeria to maintain foreign ownership limit in new energy law

ALGIERS (Reuters) - Algeria is planning to keep unchanged the main clauses in its energy law including a rule limiting foreign stakes in oil and gas projects, the government said on Monday after a meeting to discuss draft amendments to the law.

“The 51/49 rule was maintained,” the government said in a statement following the meeting chaired by Prime Minister Noureddine Bedoui.

This is the first comment in months from the government on planned amendments to the law which is aimed at attracting foreign companies to its energy sector.

The government earlier this month said it was planning to allow foreigners to have majority stakes in projects involving nonstrategic sectors.

Most foreign investors have stayed away in past years due to bureaucracy and an unattractive legal framework, making the OPEC member and gas exporter unable to carry out plans aimed at boosting output.

“The current law proved limited. It has negatively affected production and foreign investment,” the statement said.

“The draft aims to provide a stable legal and tax incentive system for the long term”.

Reporting by Hamid Ould Ahmed in Algiers; Editing by Matthew Lewis

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