Algeria eyes Tourism as Oil revenue continues to drop

New indications have appeared that show Algeria is trying to find a new source of revenue to compensate for the losses in revenues brought about by falling oil prices.

A recent report by the Oxford Business Group said Algeria was already turning to tourism to keep its gross domestic product (GDP) afloat after official data showed lower oil prices were already taking a toll on the country’s economy.

“Located a short distance from Europe, and with a large and comparatively wealthy population of its own, Algeria is primed to make use of its significant tourism potential,” the Oxford Business Group said in its report as reported by – an online magazine of hotel industry news.

“Though the industry remains underdeveloped, particularly in regards to the number of hotel rooms and the cumbersome visa regime, foreign business tourism and niche areas such as spa, desert and ecotourism have strong scope for growth.”

The report further emphasized that the Algerian government had ambitious plans to increase the number of tourists visiting the country from 2.7 million in 2017 to as high as 4.4 million before 2027.

The government has committed to developing the infrastructure needed to support this goal, which has become more pressing as the oil price wavers, it added.

Last year, Algeria’s Minister of Tourism Hacène Mermouri was quoted as saying that the country had approved the construction of over 1,800 new hotels.

On a related front, indications have been growing that global hotel companies are taking note of Algeria’s new plans for its tourism sector.

A chain of leading hotel brands including Marriott International, InterContinental Hotels Group, and Hilton Alger have already started operations to construct new hotels in the country.

Algeria is the largest oil and gas producer in Africa, with 94 percent of its export revenues coming from the fuels. However, rioting over the cost of food has made the country less attractive to visitors and also forced the government to look at diversification into renewable energies.

The recent increase in the price of oil may provide a breathing space, but alternative industries will be needed to ride out these fluctuations and the volatility they bring in the long term, added the further in its report.

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