Sunday, October 07, 2007

Buying food safely

The Michelin company has sent families of French employees working in Algiers home because of security concerns.

Last month terrorists killed nine people including two French citizens and Al-Qaeda's North Africa wing has wanred it wants to rid the region of all French and Spanish people.

We went shopping the other day at Carrefour -- a big French-owned supermarket -- and the heightened security was noticeable. Our car was searched as we went in and uniformed guards swarmed over the parking lot and entrance way. We decided we are shopping from now on in Algerian shops.

There are many. Del, the business writer, explains why. The main costs to running a small business are labor, fuel and supplies. Here, fuel is very plentiful and cheap as befits an OPEC member. Families work the shops so labor is free and the government subsidizes the cost of basic foods including milk and flour. So you can make money running these businesses here een if the competition is stiff.

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