Discover Algeria

Algeria (or El Djezaïr) is located in the north of the African continent bordered by the Mediterranean Sea and is part of the Arab Maghreb Union (AMG). Its surface area is 2,381,741 km². 
Algeria is the largest country in Africa, Arab world and Mediterranean Basin, and the tenth largest country in the world. It has 1,622 km of Mediterranean coastline. Algeria shares more than 6,385 km land borders with several countries. It has common borders with seven neighbouring countries, namely:  

  • Tunisia in the North-East.
  • Libya in the East.
  • Niger and Mali in the South.
  • Mauritania and Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR.) in the South-West.
  • and Morocco in the West.

Algeria is divided into 58 provinces (wilayas) which are decentralized regional authorities of the State. They shall have legal personality and financial autonomy. They are also decentralised administrative districts of the State with two bodies: 

  • People’s Provincial Assembly (APW), a deliberative body.
  • The prefect (Wali), executive and representative body of the Government.

Each province (wilaya) covers a specific number of municipalities. The Daïra (subdivision) is an administrative extension of the province. Thus, the 58 provinces include 1,541 municipalities and 535 Daïras.

People’s Provincial Assembly (APW), which is the deliberative body, decides by deliberation matters within its competence and on any matter of interest to the province.
The Prefect (Wali), appointed by the President of the Republic, is a representative of the State and representative of the province. He ensures the enforcement of laws and regulations and ensures the implementation of decisions of the People’s Provincial Assembly (APW).

Each municipality has its own deliberative body, the People's Municipal Assembly (APC), which elects its own president, who serves as mayor. 

Algeria's urbanization rate is around 60% and is permanently growing. Algeria has more than thirty-seven urban areas with more than 100,000 inhabitants, almost all concentrated in the north of the country. The densely populated city is the capital Algiers, a megalopolis of more than six million inhabitants, making it the first town in the Maghreb.

Algeria has a privileged geographical position and a considerable area. It is composed of different landscapes, mountains areas, Mediterranean scenery, vast semi-arid highlands, and lunar desert areas.
In the north of Algeria, a Mediterranean climate dominates, with hot and humid summers and mild winters. The more you go to the south, the more the climate becomes semi-arid to arid with higher temperatures, especially in the Sahara where the range of temperatures are considerable.

  • Population: 44,700,000 inhabitants (January 2019 estimate, source ONS, note n°890).
  • Density: 18,40 inhabitant /km².
  • Capital: Algiers.
  • Languages: Arabic and Tamazight.
  • Religion: Sunni Islam.
  • Currency: Algerian dinar.
  • Regime: People's Democratic Republic of Algeria is a constitutional representative democracy which relies on a multiparty semi-presidential system.
  • President of the Republic: Mr. Abdelmadjid TEBBOUNE.
  • Demographics: almost half the population is under 20 years old.

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As the organisation of powers is concerned, Algeria is a unitary State. It has a political multiparty semi-presidential system. The electoral system is a proportional representation. The right to vote for women was recognized in 1962.

The People's Democratic Republic of Algeria is a constitutional representative democracy based on a multi-party presidential system backed up by the 1996 constitution revised in 2020. The State prerogatives are divided between the executive power represented by the Government, appointed by the President, and the legislative power represented by the Lower House called the People’s National Assembly and the Upper House called Council of the Nation as well as a judicial power. Electoral term of office is five (5) years, renewable one time in ordinary situation. 

The President of the Republic, directly elected by universal suffrage, is Head of State, Head of the Armed Forces and responsible for national defence. He shall govern for one-renewable 5-year term of office. The President of the Republic shall preside over the meetings of the Council of Ministers. He also chairs the High Security Council (HCS).

The Government’s meeting shall be chaired, as the case may be, by the Prime Minister or the Head of Government.

The General Secretariat of Government is essentially a permanent coordinating body for government legal activity. Acting under the authority of the Presidency of the Republic, it ensures that the procedures of drafting legislative and regulatory texts are observed.

People's National Assembly (APN) is composed of 407 members who are directly elected in 59 electoral districts including 58 provinces and one district representing the "Algerian community abroad". The seats of People’s National Assembly are distributed in proportion to the population and the first legislative election took place on 20 September 1962.

The Council of Nation is the second Chamber of the Algerian Parliament. The Council of Nation which is established for the first time by the Constitution of 28 November 1996, comprises 176 members, 2/3 of whom are elected by universal indirect suffrage, among and by the elected representatives of the local assemblies (People’s Municipal Assemblies (APC) and People’s Provincial Assemblies (APW)) within each Province, the remaining third being designated by the President of the Republic.

The Council of Nation exercises legislative power with the People’s National Assembly. In this regard, it votes the laws by a majority of 3/4 of its members, and it is competent in territorial administrative organisation matter.


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Algerian law is based on the Constitution, laws and regulations, international conventions and treaties, as well as the texts adopted by pan-African organizations (Arab Maghreb Union and African Union) of which Algeria is a member. Algerian law developed since the independence of Algeria in 1962.

Constitution: 

It is the fundamental law of the country. It contains all the rules of constitutional law which specify the State’s form and organization, powers, prerogatives and relations, and the rights and duties of citizens.

Laws And Regulations:

It is the body of legal texts (laws, ordinances, regulations, decrees, bylaws) written and adopted by the main legislative power (Parliament) and the exceptional legislative power (the Executive) of the State.

International Conventions and Treaties:

These are the conventions and agreements written and concluded with States or international or pan-African organizations. These conventions and agreements comprise generated legal effects governed by the international law. Such international conventions and treaties must be ratified by Algeria.

In the hierarchy of laws, international conventions and treaties are superior to Algerian national laws.

Law:

It is about the legal texts issued from the two chambers: People’s National Assembly (APN) and the Council of Nation (CN).

Orders:

In case of People’s National Assembly vacancy or during Parliament’s recess periods, the President of the Republic may legislate by order. The written texts shall be submitted to the two Chambers of Parliament for approval at their next session. Orders shall be decided by the Council of Ministers.

Regulations:

These are matters other than those reserved to the law under the regulatory power of the President of the Republic.

Decrees:

These are a general or individual enforceable document signed by the President of the Republic (Presidential Decree) or by the Prime Minister (Executive Decree).

Decision (bylaw):

It is an enforceable decision of general or individual scope issued by one or more ministers (ministerial or interministerial decision) or other administrative authorities (province, municipality, public administrative institution having the power to that effect).

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Algeria has considerable and diversified natural resources, particularly hydrocarbons. It ranks 16th in oil reserves, 16th in production (2019) and 11th in exports (2019).

 

Algeria ranks 10th in the world regarding proven gas resources (2020), 10th in gas production (2020) and 7th in gas exports.

 

Algeria is the third largest supplier of natural gas to the European Union and its fourth largest energy supplier. Besides oil and gas, its underground contains large deposits of phosphate, zinc, iron, gold, uranium, tungsten... etc.

 

It has also renewable natural resources and is one of the best endowed countries in the world with solar resources. Integrating renewable energy into the national energy mix is a major challenge for preserving fossil resources, diversifying electricity production lines, and contributing to sustainable development and environmental protection. Through the 2011-2030 renewable energy development program mentioned above, these energies are at the heart of Algeria’s energy and economic policies, including the development of large-scale photovoltaic and wind energy, the introduction of biomass (waste recovery), cogeneration and geothermal energy, and eventually the development of solar thermal energy. 



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Algeria’s economy ranks third in the Middle East and North Africa. It is considered the driving force of the Maghreb. Algeria is one of the few countries that have managed to reduce poverty by 20% in 20 years. The Algerian authorities had taken significant steps to improve the citizen’s well-being.

Algeria has launched important economic projects to build a strong industry, since its independence in 1962.

However, despite important achievements, such as construction of roads, metro, highways, universities, factories, the Algerian economy has experienced disruption and significant difficulties in the 1980's.

Indeed, the oil shock of 1986 was a crippling blow to the Algerian economy, a period marked by anti-shortage and stabilization plans. 

At the beginning of the 1990s, Algeria had initiated structural reforms, making the transition to a market economy a reality.

Since then, Algeria has continuously improved its economy environment to develop an industrial fabric and an economy likely to create wealth and added value for the country.

The Algerian economy depends heavily on hydrocarbons and world oil and natural gas prices. Oil revenues are the country's main source of foreign exchange income. 

The business environment is continuously improving in Algeria. Many companies are experiencing strong growth, attracting foreign investment for the country. 

Nowadays, it is becoming increasingly difficult to attribute nationality to companies, as many of them operate around the world and their capital is held by foreign investors. 

However, national firms are still thriving, notwithstanding the difficulties and constraints encountered by some of them. 

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