Migration Media Award: First Place, Radio Category, French
Author: Leïla Beratto
Date of Publication: 12 February, 2018
Title: Algeria: Migrants Integrated Despite Everything in the Economy
Short summary: In Algeria, sub-Saharan migrants are mainly employed on construction sites and in agriculture. They do the most painful jobs that Algerians do not want to do anymore. They are also accompanied on these sites by Moroccans, Syrians and sometimes Yemenis, who are also in an irregular situation. Business leaders in these sectors say so themselves, without the migrants, impossible to work properly. When the authorities started arresting migrants in 2017 that initially did not affect the cinstruction companies. Migrants were arrested in the street or sometimes in their place of residence. But in the fall of 2017, an arrest that went wrong in a neighborhood entirely under construction: two migrants broke their leg by jumping from the third floor to escape the gendarmes who made arrests during the night.
This report is about the economic angle showing how much the migrants were part of the Algerian economy, contrary to what preach security and political speeches in the country. Especially, the housing and infrastructure projects, which are so politicized in the country, are the first employers of migrants. In this context, it is extremely difficult to obtain the agreement of business leaders to be recorded. All fear retaliatory action by the state or the security forces. And if a boss is arrested, it is a whole group of migrants who lose their job.
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