Algeria Has New Energy Minister
Algeria’s prime minister and energy minister were abruptly sacked last week in a major reshuffle.
Mustapha Guitouni was named energy minister on May 25, replacing Noureddine Boutarfa who held the post for less than a year. Guitouni took up his new office on May 27, the ministry said. Boutarfa’s dismissal two days previously happened while he was in Vienna successfully brokering a nine-month extension of last year's Opec production cap that had largely stabilised oil prices since.
Guitouni has been CEO of Algerian state gas and power utility Sonelgaz since mid-2016, having joined the company in 1970. Boutarfa previously held that top Sonelgaz post for 12 years. Both are seen as able administrators. There is also a new finance minister, Abderrahmane Raouia, formerly tax office director, and new foreign minister, Abdelkader Messahel, formerly minister for Maghreb and Arab League affairs.
New prime minister Abdelmadjid Tebboune (Photo credit: PM's office)
The new appointments follow through from the appointment on May 24 of a new prime minister Abdelmadjid Tebboune (pictured above) to replace Abdelmalek Sellal.
Tebboune had been acting trade minister, and prior to that housing minister since 2001. The wider reshuffle may be an act by the ailing president, the 80-yr-old Abdelaziz Bouteflika, to re-assert his authority as the economy remains buffeted by low gas and oil prices and the needs of its large young population.