Spain has decided to import more natural gas from Algeria to curb its dependency on the Russian gas supply amid the controversial crisis in Ukraine.
Visiting Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo told reporters upon his arrival Friday in Algeria on a two-day visit that "Spain seeks to boost energy cooperation with Algeria, especially in natural gas."
"The crisis between Ukraine and Russia proved dependency of Europe on Russian natural gas, and it is time for us to discuss what we can do in terms of energy cooperation with our North African friends, including Algerians," he said, noting that Algeria "supplies Spain with 45 percent of its natural gas imports. "
Algeria outputs 152 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually, 60 billion cubic meters of which are annually exported. It supplies the European Union with 14 percent of its natural gas needs.
Garcia-Margallo further indicated that "Spain is the largest EU economic partner of Algeria," adding that his visit "aims at boosting bilateral cooperation through continuing dialogue."
He concluded "Algeria and Spain regularly exchange views on regional and international issues, including the situation in Libya, Egypt and Syria."