ALGIERS – Algeria’s energy policy, centered on the development of production capacities aims at not only meeting the national needs but also contributing to meeting the demand around the world for energy, Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia said Monday in Algiers.
"Algeria ambitions to build up its energy production capacities to meet the needs of its own development and also to contribute to supplying the national market," he told the opening meeting of "Algeria Future Energy" Summit, which brings together world leaders in hydrocarbon and renewable energy industries.
Energy Ministers of numerous countries and Secretaries Generals of OPEC and the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) also attend the Summit.
In this regard, the Premier said that the world energy demand which has already doubled over the last twenty years will increase twofold by 2040, while the "world reserves in fossil energies are drastically shrinking, and which would deplete by the end of this century."
More importantly, the entire planet is facing "serious threat" on the climate: "a challenge which further promotes clean energies, like the natural gas and the renewable energies," Ouyahia added.
Citing Algeria, Ouyahia said that it would see its domestic demand rising by 20% by 2040, while its needs in the hydrocarbon revenues "will remain essential" for the continuation of the country’s development process.
For the Prime Minister, those are the challenges that Algeria intends to address with the help of its external partners through an approach revolved around four major lines.
The first line focuses on the renewal and diversification of Algeria's energy resources: "The first step will be to increase our conventional energy production capacity through a broader exploration of the mining sector, which will extend to the north of the country, including our maritime area," he detailed.
The goal also is boosting the country’s nonconventional energy resources, which exploration and exploration will be "conducted in respect of the environment."
Moreover, Algeria intends to develop the exploitation of renewable energies as it had already drafted an ambitious programme. Sonatrach group will be associated in this programme to mobilize external partners in the production and establishment of a local industry of inputs, said the Prime Minister.
According to him, the government seeks to move forward in this field of renewable solar energy "as it successfully did in the field of seawater desalination," by mobilizing the necessary support, incentives and funding.
As for the second line, Ouyahia said that it concerned the finding of new energy markets. Efforts are made to increase the "transport capacities of Algeria to Europe via gas pipelines."
In the middle and long terms, Algeria will work to promote solar energy export to its neighboring countries, notably in the European continent, added Ouyahia.
With regard to the third line, the Premier said it concerns the development of the petrochemical industry, which is complementary to the hydrocarbon production: "This is a strategic objective for Algeria, which intends to contribute to boosting many other emerging industries in the country."
In this regard, he welcomed the recent partnership between Sonatrach and the French group Total on the construction of a polypropylene production complex.
Speaking about the fourth line, the Prime Minister said it focuses on improving the performance of the national hydrocarbon industries: "It will entail the use of the most advanced technologies. In this respect, the government supports Sonatrach's modernization plan."
To accompany all this, the government is currently working to update the Hydrocarbons Law, "which will be completed in a few months," with the aim of making mining exploration and exploitation more attractive.
Addressing the bosses of the world's largest energy companies at the Algeria Future Energy Summit (Eni, Total, Repsol, Cepsa, Saipem ...), Ouyahia said that "this is a clear message to the rest of the world from a country that builds its own future in a spirit of partnership, respect for commitments and contribution to building a world of peace, harmony and cooperation."