Although he had made the BRICS one of his main priorities, the Algerian president, deeply disappointed by the refusal to accept his country's candidacy for the BRICS, has finally declared that he is no longer interested in this organisation and that he has closed the file for good. He did so a few days ago before the heads of several local media at the headquarters of the Presidency of the Republic

Tebboune: "I am no longer interested in the BRICS and the file is closed for good"

El presidente argelino Abdelmadjid Tebboune - PHOTO/FILE
PHOTO/FILE - Abdelmadjid Tebboune

On Thursday 22 December 2022, during his regular interview with representatives of the national media, broadcast on national radio and television channels, President Tebboune stated that "the year 2023 will be crowned by Algeria's accession to the BRICS". A statement that was repeated like a leitmotif throughout the Algerian media, to the point of becoming an obsession for even the most economic layman. 

On Tuesday 3 October 2023, while receiving a larger than usual number of Algerian press chiefs, from both the public and private sectors, Abdelmadjid Tebboune himself erased with one stroke of the pen the ambition he had declared nine months earlier, responding laconically to one of the editors who had asked him about the reasons for the rejection of Algeria's application for membership of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and the Republic of South Africa): "The BRICS dossier is definitely closed," reports the Algerian daily El-Watan. 

The Algerian president is bitter about the collapse of all his hopes for an organisation in which he thought he had only friends. Although he knew before the meeting that his country's candidacy would be rejected for reasons that his advisors had no doubt concealed from him, it was a setback for Tebboune.

PHOTO/FILE - El presidente de Argelia, Abdelmadjid Tebboune
PHOTO/FILE - Abdelmadjid Tebboune

A setback that deprived him of many of the arguments he had intended to present to Algerian officials to convince them to reappoint him for a second term. It is also a setback that exposes all the deceitful policies he has pursued since taking office, repeating to anyone who will listen that "all was well in the best of all worlds" and that Algeria had never been as good as it has been in recent years. But the reality is quite different. A reality marked by endless shortages of basic necessities, the paralysis of the economic system, unemployment and the impoverishment of the middle classes. 

By making Algeria's membership of the BRICS his favourite theme in every speech, Tebboune has popularised an organisation unknown to Algerian public opinion, only to reveal how far behind his country is in terms of economic development. Algerians are surprised to learn that Ethiopia, described as a poor country, is accepted by the BRICS and not their country. The Algerian president has no other argument to justify his failure than to say that he is no longer interested in the BRICS. 

And as failure never comes alone, the rejection of Algeria's candidacy to the BRICS was followed by the rejection of the candidacy of its representative in the African Football Confederation, who aspired to a seat on the executive committee, and all of this was punctuated by the sly withdrawal of Algeria's candidacy to host the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations, which went to Morocco. The same Morocco that managed to win the bid to host the 2030 World Cup, along with Spain and Portugal. This is tantamount to a bitter defeat for its Algerian neighbour. So much for Abdelmadjid Tebboune, who would be better off thinking about retiring from the scene at the end of his current mandate in December 2024.