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Coveney to lead Trade Mission to Algeria

"Significant potential for Irish Agri food" 

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD, will travel to Algiers this weekend to meet his counterpart, Mr. Rachid Benaissa, the Algerian Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development and to promote sales of Irish dairy and meat products. 

Algeria which has a population of 35 million is already an important market for Irish dairy products and has significant further potential as a market for Irish food products. The mission includes Irish Dairy Board senior management, Bord Bia and senior Departmental officials. 

Minister Coveney said that "it was important to build contacts at Governmental and senior official level to facilitate further development of the trading relationship between Ireland and Algeria, and to raise the profile of Irish companies and their products in the region."   

The Minister will also open new representative office and a state of the art milk powder packaging plant for the Irish Dairy Board's Kerrygold Brand in Oran, Algeria's second city, and will meet a number of other Irish and Algerian contacts seeking to create business opportunities in Algeria during his visit.

Algeria is already a key market for Irish dairy products and has significant growth potential. It is a significant net importer of milk and milk products, and dairy consumption is growing at a rate of 8% per annum. In 2010, exports of Irish dairy products to Algeria were valued at almost €38 million.

Speaking in advance of the visit, the Minister said:

"I think it is extremely important to be supportive of Irish businesses seeking to build a bridgehead for the Irish agri food sector in markets that have significant potential for growth and expansion.

This Irish Dairy Board initiative in Oran is entirely consistent with the strategic objectives of Food Harvest 2020 and I am confident that the work we do in raising the profile of Ireland and its agri food industry at Government, official and business level in Algeria will pay dividends for Irish food companies doing business in this region in the future."

Date Released: 24 September 2011