The Council of Ministers started its works by the adoption of a bill amending and supplementing the law 84-09 of 4 February 1984 relating to the country's territorial organization, presented by the minister of the Interior, Local Authority and National Planning, the statement said.
The bill aims to "promote 10 administrative districts, created in the country's south in eight different provinces, into provinces with full prerogatives, four years after their creation," the statement said.
It is also "intended to boost decentralization, ensure a balanced territorial division, improve its attractiveness so as to meet the requirements of socio-economic development, especially in border areas, and bring public services closer in those regions."
The step is likely to "make of the southern provinces, to be shifted from nine now to 19, a catalyst for national development, able to address the concerns of the citizens and give a fresh impetus to economic development, as expected by the local population, so as to promote the area into a regional centre of excellence."
In this respect, the bill provides for the creation of ten new provinces in the country's south, namely Timimoune, Bordj Badji Mokhtar, Ouled Djellal, Beni Abbes, In Salah, In Guezzam, Touggourt, Djanet, El-Meghaier and El-Menia.
The national territory will have a total of 58 provinces while the number of communes (1.541) will remain unchanged.
After the adoption of the bill, the head of State said the decision comes "as the culmination of the development process of the country's territorial organization in tune with the socio-economic change over the past decades." It also "aims to better address the needs of those regions, to further involve them in the management of their affairs and strengthen the authorities' efforts in local development."