Yacine Oualid is Algeria’s Minister of Startups, a newly-created ministry under the new government. He was appointed on January 02, 2020 at the age of 26, making him the youngest minister in the northern African country. He studied at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Sidi Bel Abbès.
“Being in this ministry is a big privilege, especially since we have the full support of the President of the Republic and the Prime Minister. This is very encouraging because, for the first time, in Algeria we have a government that has placed its trust in young people,” he said.
Oualid is the founder of two start-ups in the areas of cloud computing, cybersecurity, digital marketing and digital intelligence. The young minister is a self-taught web developer and digital marketer who is passionate about empowering brands through client-centric solutions, making the new technologies easier and more accessible, and helping other startups to grow faster.
Before becoming Algeria’s Minister of Startups, in June 2016, Oualid created SSH, a company specializing in cloud solutions for businesses, which would later become the first private web host in Algeria.
Together with his partner, Oualid founded Smart Ways3, a startup in the field of logistics and geolocation in September 2019 and in December he also founded Bright Solutions, a leading IT company providing IT solutions and services, headquartered in England.
As a new minister, he said he’ll concern himself with projects that aligns the new ambitions of Algeria as it concerns startups and Algeria’s digital economy. “My role is first of all to set up a legal framework which is favorable to startups. Once set up, this legal framework will facilitate the creation of startups and their financing. The goal is to see it materialize in a few months’ time, Algerian champions, who will be able to offer their services all over the world”.
Algeria is determined to become an African pillar of innovation and “we want to offer our entrepreneurs the best framework for entrepreneurship and innovation,” he said in an interview.
Oualid believes Startups can become the driving forces of the Algerian economy, which for many years has been dependent on the hydrocarbon sector.
He said: “In the digital sector, they can quickly create jobs and wealth. The digital economy now accounts for more than 30% of global economic growth, so we are at an important turning point in our history that should not be missed. The government’s interest in startups and the creation of a ministry dedicated to their promotion, he says testify to the importance of this subject for the Algerian economy”.