The Government considers that Algeria is “backing down” with its offensive statement in response to the European Union. Government sources show this newspaper their “satisfaction” for the content of the text sent by the Algerian embassy to the EU this Friday in the sense that it denies, despite its harsh tone, having suspended commercial operations with Spain.

“As for the alleged measure of the Algerian Government to stop current transactions with a European partner, it only exists in the minds of those who wield it and those who have rushed to stigmatize it,” the Algerian statement points out in a harsh tone with the High EU representative, José Borrell, the European Trade Commissioner, Valdis Dombrovskis, and the Foreign Minister himself, José Manuel Albares, who do maintain that trade relations have been altered. He also accuses the three of “precipitation” in assessing the measure as a possible violation of the 2005 Euro-Mediterranean Agreement.

The refusal of the Algerian embassy contrasts radically with the testimonies of Spanish companies that trade with Algeria and that do assure that there has been a slowdown since the Algerian bank received the order this Thursday to freeze direct debits of operations related to Spain. The government sources consulted trust that this refusal expressed in the statement will result, for consistency, in the annulment of that order from the Algerian banking association.

The Spanish Government also takes positively that Algeria reiterates that it will comply with the gas contracts with Spanish companies. “Algeria has already made it known through the most authoritative voice, that of the President of the Republic, that it will continue to fulfill all the commitments it has assumed,” the embassy statement said. It also stresses that “it is up to the affected companies to assume all their contractual commitments,” the statement said. In other words, Naturgy must respect the commitment in the contract to accept a price revision.

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