ALGIERS, May 24 (Xinhua) -- Trade exchange between Algeria and other African countries is still far below potential, with the value worth around 3 billion U.S. dollars annually, Director General of the Algerian Agency for the Promotion of Foreign Trade (AGEX) Chafiq Chetti said on Thursday.
Algeria's exports to other African countries amounted to 1.6 billion dollars annually, while its imports from the continent reached around 1.4 billion dollars, Chetti was quoted as saying by the Algerian state radio channel.
Chetti said that 96 percent of intra-Africa trade transactions in Algeria are concluded with only five African countries, which means that the North African nation has almost no business relations with the rest of the African countries.
The official pointed out that Algeria, unlike neighboring countries such as Tunisia and Morocco, is lagging behind in terms of entering African markets, especially those of Western Africa.
In this regard, Chetti indicated that Algeria has opened three commercial liaison offices in all of Côte D'Ivoire, Senegal and Cameroon, but the absence of Algerian bank subsidiaries there makes it difficult to attract assets to achieve the desired objectives.
In 2017, Algeria suffered trade balance deficit of 11.19 billion dollars, as imports hit 45.95 billion dollars, while exports reached 34.76 billion dollars, official figures show.