A mysterious note issued by an unofficial Algerian association warns Algerian economic operators, through their national banks, to stop accepting contracts for the transport of goods imported from abroad that provide for transhipment/transit through Moroccan ports

When Algiers wants to sabotage Tangier Med

Grúas de contenedores en la terminal I del puerto Tánger Med en la ciudad norteña de Tánger - PHOTO/AFP
Container cranes at Terminal I of the Tangier Med port in the northern city of Tangier - PHOTO/AFP

Inviting banks to refuse all direct debit operations for transport contracts where transhipment/transit through Moroccan ports has become an offence is simply stupid. Knowing that transhipment/transit via Tangier/Med (it is this port that is being targeted) is less costly, in addition to the time-saving proximity. 

  1. The Professional Association of Banks and Financial Establishments

The Professional Association of Banks and Financial Establishments

Who is the organisation behind this incongruous idea? The Professional Association of Banks and Financial Establishments (ABEF) is based in the Val de Hydra, in a sensitive area on the heights of Algiers, next to the villas occupied by Generals Tewfik, Nezzar, Chengriha and other regime potentates. This association is largely unknown in Algeria's economic and financial sphere. 

It was first heard of in July 2022. A communiqué in the same vein invited Algerian banks to stop financing commercial transactions with Spanish companies. A way to punish Madrid for its support for the autonomy proposal for Western Sahara. An economic sanction for political reasons. To say the least. And now the mysterious ABEF is at it again, this time against Morocco.

ABEF Argelia Puerto Tánger Med

On two occasions, this mysterious ABEF has acted through a communiqué signed by its general delegate, a certain Rachid Belaïd, who signs instructions without indicating the slightest motivation, as if this association were above the laws and institutions of the state and could disregard the economic interests of the country. 

In fact, this directive cannot have any influence whatsoever on the performance and profitability of the port of Tangier, given the negligible volume of traffic transiting through Tangier Med to Algeria. The big losers in the story are the Algerian importers, who will find it difficult to find partners who will agree to be dictated to by a route that is contrary to economic logic. For example, a ship carrying a cargo of frozen meat from Brazil or a cargo of bananas from Costa Rica or Colombia is obliged to transit through Tangier Med, or often to tranship the cargo there, but will now be forced to transit through the port of Alicante or a French port. Obviously, this will not be without additional costs. An additional cost that will be paid by the Algerian public, as it will be reflected in the cost price of the product. 

In short, whatever they may think in Algiers, the ABEF directive will not affect Moroccan ports at all, but it will harm the Algerian consumer's pocket. More stupid than the authors of such a decision, you die.