Algiers, May 14, 2010 - In the context of preparation of the new country partnership strategy with Algeria for the 2010-2013 period, Dr. Shamshad Akhtar, World Bank Regional Vice President for Middle East and North Africa Region, conducted a working visit to Algeria from May 12-14, 2010.
Dr. Akhtar was received by Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahya, Minister of Finance Karim Djoudi, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Rachid Benaïssa, and Bank of Algeria Governor Mohammed Laksaci. These meetings facilitated an exchange of views on Algeria’s development priorities and the resources needed for the important reform programs initiated by the Government.
"My visit to Algeria is part of an effort to strengthen relations between the World Bank and Algeria,”stated Dr. Shamshad Akhtar at the end of these talks. “We are listening to the priorities of the Algerian Government and stand ready to mobilize international expertise in order to assist with reforms in the areas in which the Government wishes to work with our institution.”
The country partnership strategy framework being prepared will be based on technical assistance activities to support a number of actions of the Algerian Government in the areas of agriculture, the financial sector, the environment, economic policy, and public policy planning and evaluation.
Dr. Shamshad Akhtar also met with a panel of economists, entrepreneurs, and civil society representatives with whom she had fruitful discussions that allowed her to better understand their views on the development challenges facing Algeria and to better grasp the specific features of Algeria’s economic and social situation.
Ms. Françoise Clottes, Acting Maghreb Department Director, underscored the importance of close collaboration with the Algerian authorities, which has facilitated joint identification of the areas in which the World Bank can provide technical assistance.
In her statement, Ms. Clottes noted that: "We have worked closely with the Algerian authorities to begin to formulate a new country partnership framework in the near future that will permit Algeria to benefit from World Bank expertise and international experience in a number of areas. The objective of this collaboration is to support the implementation of specific government activities aimed at strengthening growth and economic diversification, which will redound to the benefit of the Algerian people.”
In the past, the World Bank Group has worked with the Algerian authorities on several development projects in the context of the previous country partnership strategy for the 2004-2010 period.