Energy in Algeria

CMS

The energy practice at CMS focuses on providing corporate and commercial advice to clients in the energy sector. In addition to providing ongoing advice on compliance and regulatory matters, which includes analysis and structuring of contracts, restructuring of subsidiaries, and divestment mandates. In 2019, the firm also advised on liquidation procedures pertaining to Algerian subsidiaries of multinational oil and gas firms, with resulting disputes work. Samir Sayah leads the team.

Practice head(s):

Samir Sayah

Gide Loyrette Nouel

Gide Loyrette Nouel has advised on many of the most high-value matters in the oil and gas sector in Algeria in recent years. The firm has advised on both upstream and downstream mandates, and is particularly well versed in structuring joint venture arrangements between multinational energy companies and Sonatrach, Algeria’s state energy company. As well as handling projects work, the firm acts on general corporate matters for energy sector clients, including on share acquisitions. Structuring EPC contracts is another of the practice’s core strengths. Samy Laghouati, head of the firm’s Algiers office, has experience in drafting exploration licences, M&A transactions, and hydrocarbon asset securitisation. Of counsel Djamila Annad, formerly of Sonatrach and the Ministry of Energy until 2015, is another key name.

Practice head(s):

Samy Laghouati

Other key lawyers:

Djamila Annad

Key clients

Total Refining & Chemical

Engie

Daelim Industrial

Halliburton

Schlumberger

Repsol

ENI

Total E&P

Sonatrach

Work highlights

  • Advising Total on setting up a joint venture with the Algerian state-owned oil and gas company Sonatrach for the development of a major petrochemical project in Algeria.
  • Assistance to Daelim Industrial within the frame of the performance of an EPC contract relating to the construction of a gas-fired combined-cycle plant with a capacity of 1200 megawatt.
  • Assistance with the Engie Exploration Production session.

Bennani & Associés

Bennani & Associés handles high-value share acquisitions, exploration contracts, and purchase agreements for multinational oil and gas industry clients. Mourad Seghir, head of the firm’s energy practice, has a strong track record assisting international companies with investments into Algerian oil and gas, with extensive experience of drafting commercial contracts for joint ventures and M&A transactions. The firm has advised on a number of joint ventures by international companies with Sonatrach, Algeria’s state oil and gas company. Dispute resolution in the sector is another core focus of the team.

Practice head(s):

Mourad Seghir

Key clients

BP

Cairn

Stream Flo

Dragon Oil

Saudi Aramco Products Trading Company

Nabors

ENI

Noble Energy

Work highlights

  • Acting for multinational energy company Cairn on its more than €700m bid for the acquisition of Edison.
  • Assisting UAE-based Dragon Oil in relation to the execution of contractual commitments for the exploration phases of different blocks jointly operated with state-owned Sonatrach; other work involves providing guidance on regulatory issues with the oil and gas authority, Alnaft.
  • Advised Saudi Aramco Products Trading Company on purchase agreements for crude oil to be bought from state-owned company Sonatrach.

Bourabiat Associés

Bourabiat Associés’ energy practice is well balanced between transactional, regulatory, and projects work. The firm has advised multinationals on joint venture arrangements with Sonatrach, the state oil and gas company, M&A  and share acquisition transactions, and both public procurement procedures and high-value private outsourcing bids and contracts. Foued Bourabiat focuses primarily on financing and commercial contracts pertaining to oil and gas projects, while associate Steven Aldrich assists clients with the day-to-day operations of ongoing projects. As well as acting for clients in the oil and gas industry, the firm has advised financial institutions, including private equity firms, on their investments in Algeria’s oil and gas sector.

Practice head(s):

Foued Bourabiat

Other key lawyers:

Steven Aldrich

Key clients

Air Products

BNP Paribas

Cevital

DP World

Emerging Capital Partners (ECP)

Edison

Fruital (Coca-Cola)

Geodis

Groupe Ponroy Santé

International Finance Corporation (IFC)

Jamjoom Pharmaceuticals

Myah Bahr Honaine/Aguas de Skikda (Abengoa)

Neptune Energy

Procter & Gamble

Samsung C&T

The Carlyle Group CVC Capital Partners China Investment Corporation

Work highlights

  • Acting for the Carlyle Group, CVC Capital Partners and the China Investment Corporation (CIC), in connection with the multibillion-dollar acquisition of a majority of the share capital of Engie’s interest in upstream petroleum activities in various jurisdictions.
  • Acting for Air Products on two gas production and delivery agreements entered into with Sonatrach, including the design, build and operation of two new air separation plants in Algeria.
  • Acting for Oxy on the Algerian aspects of the acquisition of Anadarko which holds significant interests in upstream petroleum activities in Algeria, including all due diligence and Algerian law regulatory aspects.

LPA-CGR

LPA-CGR, one of the relatively few French firms to maintain a permanent office in the Algerian capital, is well placed to advise on corporate and commercial matters for clients in the energy sector. The firm has extensive experience in structuring joint venture agreements between Algerian firms and multinational and foreign companies. Rym Loucif is the key name.

Practice head(s):

Rym Loucif

Ghellal & Mekerba

Ghellal & Mekerba’s energy practice is highly experienced in handling complex project work, with a strong track record in handling the construction processes for several power plants, traditional and renewable, advising clients from Canada, France, Germany and Spain. Managing partner Amine Ghellal is well-versed in energy regulation, having formerly worked for both Sonatrach, Algeria’s state-owned oil and gas company, and OPEC. Maître Nouara Issad, another Sonatrach alumna, has extensive experience in exploration projects.

Hadj-Hamou/Djouadi

Hadj-Hamou/Djouadi, an associate office of Dentons, works on corporate, regulatory and contentious matters in the sector. Sid Hadj-Hamou and Ahmed Djouadi are notable practitioners.

Hamza Law Office

Mustapha Hamza heads the team at Hamza Law Office, which advises clients in the oil and gas sector on a range of matters. The firm has a particular focus on banking and finance transactions.