Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was on an official visit to Algeria to invite or “summon” its president to go to Moscow and not for the sake of Algiers. It is as if to say, the sulfur compounds contained in the Algerian gas give off toxic because that is what it is really about.
Sergei Lavrov was certainly pleased with the increase in trade between Algiers and Moscow, but that was just the usual nonsense. So much for the official side of this visit which was intended to be, supposedly, on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Joint Declaration on the Strategic Partnership between the two countries.
As for off and behind the scenes, it’s a different story because in reality this prelude to a working session between the delegations of the two countries has a strong smell of gas. Indeed, Algeria is a gas exporter which supplies just over 11% of the gas consumed in Europe, against 47% for its “strategic ally” Russia.
We know that since the beginning of the Ukrainian conflict, several European countries and elsewhere, sanctions oblige, have sought to reduce their dependence on Russian deliveries. Also, we turn to Algeria designated for a reason of proximity at least for those of the EU. Except there is a catch.
Indeed, Algiers only has a capacity ” very limited to increase its exports according to the leitmotif of the senile people of Algiers in their desperate attempt not to alienate Moscow. Quietly, however, we will not hesitate to open the floodgates and kick towards Italy which, along the way, has discovered European Hub developments in this area, thus replacing Spain. The latter in the eyes of our two Statlers and Waldorf “made in Algeria“ for having come a little too close to Morocco bears the brunt of it.
But that’s not really the subject, although Sergei Lavrov’s trip is related to gas. Moreover, the Russian MAE did not hesitate to recall it ” Russia, Algeria and the other gas exporting countries, we believe that the agreements already concluded must be respected. “, he underlined. We can see it, therefore, it was precisely a question of this hydrocarbon so topical at the moment in Algiers and with regard to the gas situation in the world, we imagine it, Russia protects its back and does not want Algeria give him a kid behind his back.
This is because the strategic depth of relations between Algeria and Russia remains limited. Algeria in the eyes of Moscow is neither more nor less than a good customer for its arms deliveries. In addition, Algeria has the largest defense budget in Africa with 46% of Russian arms exports to the continent ($10 billion per year). That is to say if it is attractive. All good for the state coffers of the Russian Federation. In the East of Eden, Russian weapons are so relentlessly bought that we even find ourselves on the podium of the best customer behind India and China.
Except that apart from this military component, Algeria’s relations with Russia are far from corresponding to a partnership of “strategic allies”. The presence of Russia in Algeria remains weak and insignificant on several aspects, notably the economic and the financial, hence a partnership which is felt by the most attenuated profitability.
Broadly speaking, Europe and the United States are better off in economic exchanges than with Russia. The latter exports billions of dollars to Algeria and imports only a few million dollars, although there is food and drink. In short, very few Russian companies venture there. Diplomatically it’s not as much “such a strategic alliance” either. Russia has never openly taken sides in favor of Algeria in the conflict which opposes it to Morocco and has even greatly improved its commercial relations with the Kingdom.
Surely the convocation to the Kremlin of the Algerian president with the unpronounceable name will not be a cakewalk at the other end of the table for the senile. The unfortunate will in vain assure Moscow that they would not opt for the increase of gas exports to the European continent, because of its limited productive capacities, it will be reprimanded in its distant seat at the same level as those who have it preceded. Russia, which holds the world’s gas manna, having decreed that no revision of the contracts in progress should be possible, it should be the same for Algiers and it will have to be adhered to. Otherwise, the house of cards would crumble.