Statement by IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde at the Conclusion of her Visit to Algeria
ALGIERS, Algeria, March 14, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Ms. Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), made the following statement today in Algiers at the end of her visit to Algeria:
“It is a great pleasure to return to Algeria, home of many cultures, and meet with its people. This is my first visit in Algiers, La Blanche, as Managing Director of the IMF.
“I had the privilege to meet with President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal, Finance Minister Karim Djoudi, Governor of the Banque d’Algérie Mohammed Laksaci, and other senior officials. I also had the pleasure of interacting with representatives of the private sector, distinguished women leaders, and promising young men and women. I was inspired by their determination to contribute to the well-being of their economy and society.
“During these meetings, I congratulated the Algerian authorities for the progress witnessed during the past decade. We discussed the outlook for the global economy and its impact on countries in the region. Despite the difficult external environment, growth is expected to remain solid, between 3 and 3½ percent over the next two years. I also extended my appreciation for Algeria’s important support to strengthening the IMF’s lending capacity.
“Algeria has a significant growth potential, but faces a number of challenges—namely high inflation and unemployment, particularly among the young and women. I encouraged my counterparts to take further measures to preserve macroeconomic stability and ensure long-term fiscal sustainability. To spur inclusive growth and reduce unemployment, a new awakening of the private sector is also needed. Structural reforms to enhance the business climate, attract foreign direct investment, deepen the financial sector and equip the workforce with needed skills will be key. The IMF stands ready to continue providing policy advice and technical assistance to strengthen the Algerian economy’s resilience.
“Finally, I would like to express my great appreciation to the government and the people of Algeria for their gracious hospitality. The IMF values highly the constructive and collaborative relationship with Algeria.”