Economy, Mining and Manufacturing
Manufacturing accounts, pyrites, crude petroleum, growing industries, barite
The chief mineral products are hydrocarbons—crude petroleum and natural gas—from the Sahara. Algeria possesses some of the largest oil and natural gas reserves in the world, and is one of the world’s top natural gas exporters. Oil production in 1999 was 509 million barrels; natural gas production totaled 82 billion cu m (2.9 trillion cu ft). Hydrocarbons account for 60 percent of Algeria’s budget revenues and 30 percent of GDP. More than 95 percent of Algeria’s export revenues are derived from hydrocarbon sales.
Other major mineral products are iron ore and pyrites, zinc, lead, mercury, gypsum, barite, and coal. More than 500 million tons of phosphates are thought to exist in hilly regions of Djebel Onk in the north. Non-hydrocarbon mining contributes 17 percent of Algeria’s GDP. Nearly all mining and industrial activity is state-controlled. In the late 1990s, however, the government privatized some industries and began to allow foreign investment in the hydrocarbon sector.
Manufacturing accounts for 8 percent of Algeria’s GDP. Major manufactures are carpets and textiles, chemicals, refined petroleum, plastics, construction materials, olive oil, wine, and processed tobacco. Rapidly growing industries include those producing iron and steel, automobiles, paper, and electrical items. Much of the mining and manufacturing industries are centered around the cities of Algiers, Annaba, and Oran.
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