LONDON – Saturday, 25 November 2023 (APS) – The Algerian-British Business Council (ABBC) held its annual meeting at the House of Lords on Thursday evening, under the patronage of Baroness Symons, a friend of Algeria and President of the Arab-British Chamber of Commerce.

In addition to Algerian ambassador to London, Mr Nourredine Yazid, and UK ambassador to Algiers, Sharon Ward, a large number of heads and economic operators were present at this annual meeting.

The meeting provided an opportunity for speakers to assess the progress made in British-Algerian relations over the last few years, and to plan for a very promising future.

The first speaker was ABBC President Olga Maitland, who spoke enthusiastically about her country’s growing role in the Algerian economy and the importance of English in the Algerian education system.

“Algeria is a great modern State that has taken off, is developing in all areas and offers infinite opportunities,” she stressed.

Baroness Symons, for her part, praised “the remarkable partnership and flourishing friendship that have been established between Algeria and the United Kingdom, expressing her conviction that “the mechanisms and milestones that have been put in place will enable this multi-faceted partnership to expand and touch on all cutting-edge sectors without exception, citing the fields of artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and digital technology.”

She welcomed the decision by the leaders of the two countries to set up a strategic dialogue, calling on the Algerian authorities to “take advantage of the measure decreed by the British government to lift customs barriers on Algerian products.”

Finally, Baroness Symons expressed the hope that Algeria would play an active part in the next UK-Africa Summit, scheduled for 2024, “because of its weight and role on the continent.”

Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon, Minister of State for the Middle East and North Africa, who was detained by ministerial duties, had a message read out by the Ambassador to Algiers, Sharon Ward, to “reiterate the British government’s support for the fundamental work being done for the benefit of the peoples of both countries.”

The Minister, who hopes to visit Algeria in the near future, expressed his great satisfaction at the results of the recent visit to London by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and the National Community Abroad, Ahmed Attaf.

Lord Ahmad was also delighted with the quality of the discussions he had had with the Minister, both during the work of the 2nd session of the strategic dialogue and during the consultative meeting on the Security Council, organised at Wilton Park, and expressed his wish for “close collaboration within this United Nations body, where Algeria will have a seat from January 2024.”

Algerian ambassador, Nourredine Yazid, took his turn to underline “the Algerian government’s determination to build a strong, dynamic, resilient and diversified economy, and to guarantee every facility to attract and promote British investment in Algeria,” expressing his satisfaction that the two countries “already enjoy an excellent relationship” and that “the Strategic Dialogue underway is giving a definite boost to economic exchanges.”

Nourredine Yazid highlighted Algeria’s strengths in promoting the attractiveness of its market: a strategic geographical position that makes the country “a gateway to Africa and Europe,” basic infrastructure that connects Algeria to many African countries, and facilities and advantages that make investment promising in areas such as public health, education, agri-food, agriculture, mining, renewable energy, transport and services.”

In this vein, we should also mention the contribution of Yacine Bouhara, head of the “Tell Group,” an investment fund for whom “investing in Algeria and growing your capital is now.”

For Bouhara, the Brexit is another reason for the British government to invest fully in Algeria in all areas.