Algeria ends ban on some imports, imposes 30 to 200 percent duties

ALGIERS, Jan 29 (Reuters) – Algeria has lifted a ban on imports of several goods and replaced it with customs duties ranging from 30 to 200 percent, the trade ministry said on Tuesday.

The measure allows imports of products such as cell phones, home appliances, raw materials and some foodstuffs, the ministry said on its website. Some remain banned, including cars.

“The goods and products, which were suspended during the year 2018, are for import from now on,” the ministry said. The measure is aimed at encouraging local companies and protecting the nation’s “infant industries”, it said.

Algeria imposed a ban on 851 products last year in a bid to ease financial pressure caused by lower oil and gas revenue, the main source of state revenue. But the country’s bill for imports remained high because of poor domestic non-energy output.

“This will only affect negatively the purchasing power of citizens,” economics professor Abderrahmane Aya said.

The new customs duties now apply to a list of products such as household appliances and mobile phones.

Two private manufacturers of mobile phones have complained about falling market share caused by competition from imports.

Duties will also apply to some construction materials, such as cement, marble, ceramics and finished granite, as well as products such as aluminium, furniture and plastic products.

Foodstuffs, such as poultry and red meat, will be subject to duties. But exempted food products include frozen beef, as well as fresh, dried and canned fruits and cereal derivatives.

The ministry said more products could be added to the list.

This may make an impact on Algerian economy and either on such political standards at the country . As per Algeria is one of the economically and infrastructure developed country in Africa any impact on their economy and politics will obviously put issues in their neighborhood and the countries they’ve good relation with

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