ALGIERS, March 22 (KUNA) -- Algeria and China signed Tuesday an agreement to launch a joint venture at a total cost of USD 7 billion to produce 5.4 million tons of fertilizers per year from a phosphate mine in Algeria.

In a joint press statement, the Algerian energy giant Sonatrach said that the agreement was hammered out between the Algerian groups ASMIDAL (a subsidiary of Sonatrach) and MANAL on the one hand and the Chinese companies WUHUAN and TIAN'AN on the other hand.

The project will produce fertilizers from the Bled El-Hadba phosphate mine in the eastern Algerian region of Tebessa, it pointed out.

It added that the Algerian duo will hold 56 percent of the shares vis-a-vis 44 percent for the Chinese counterparts. (end) mr.rj.ibi

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