Algeria forms new government with energy and finance ministers unchanged

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Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune on Wednesday named a new government, with the energy and finance ministers from the previous administration both keeping their jobs, the presidency said.

It said Ramdane Lamamra was appointed as foreign minister, taking over from Sabri Boukadoum.

Appointed last week as prime minister to replace Abdelaziz Djerad, Ayman Benabderrahmane, who was finance minister in the previous government, will remain in charge of finance, while Mohamed Arkab kept his job as energy minister, the presidency said in a statement read out by a spokesman on state television.

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OPEC member Algeria has been trying to extract itself from a financial and economic crisis that has caused budget and trade deficits after a fall in energy export revenues, the main source of state finances.

Elected in December 2019 after mass protests forced his predecessor Abdelaziz Bouteflika to step down, Tebboune has promised to carry out political and economic reforms.

He has said most planned reforms have been delayed due to the global pandemic that deepened the crisis in Algeria and worsened its financial situation.

Tebboune’s plans involve mainly developing the non-energy sector, including agriculture, as the North African nation imports most of its food needs.

The new foreign minister, Lamamra, had held the role several times under former president Bouteflika.

Most ministers in the previous administration maintained their jobs in the new cabinet.

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