Algeria reaps oil bene ts despite price fall
Algeria is reaping the bene ts of an oil exploitation boom as companies strike deals to start drill- ing. In November 2018 ENI and Total signed an agreement with Sonatrach for o shore oil and gas exploration in Algeria. The exploration licences cover an area where ENI’s production assets are located (an area of 8,500 sq km in the North Berkine basin). ENI has also made an agreement with Sonatrach to hold a 49% stake in three onshore oil blocks in the Algerian desert, which are estimat- ed to contain 145m barrels of oil. Production is expected to start in 2020In June 2018 Total, Sonatrach and Repsol extended the drilling and development of the Tin Fouyé Tabankort gas and condensate eld. The eld currently produces more than 80,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day and has done so for the last six years. The deals will o set the impact on growth expected from the recent fall in world oil prices. The government expects the economy to grow by 2.6% in 2019, down from the 4% it had forecast for 2018 because of lower spending. However this is more optimistic than the International Monetary Fund which believes growth will be lower than previously hoped. Either way, the economy remains set for a slowdown. The IMF’s October 2018 forecasts indicate the economy will grow by 2.4% in 2018, rather than the 3.0% envisaged six months earlier. The IMF still sees the economy picking up to 2.7% in 2019 but then slowing to 1.8% and 1.1% in 2020 and 2021 respectively.