Algeria and Italy on Monday signed 16 cooperation agreements in energy and other fields during Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s one-day visit.

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune held a meeting with Draghi and the two sides signed 16 agreements in the fields of hydrocarbons and renewable energy, investment, pharmaceutical industry, scientific research and so on.

“Tomorrow (Tuesday) we will sign a 4-billion-U.S. dollar deal with Occidental, Eni and TotalEnergies, which will allow supplying Italy with a large quantity of Algerian natural gas,” said Tebboune at a joint press briefing, stressing the commitment between the two countries to pursuing energy cooperation.

The two leaders also discussed regional and international issues, as well as global food security, he added.

For his part, the Italian prime minister said that Algeria is a “key” country for Italy in the field of energy, stressing that the two countries have to strengthen their friendly ties in a bid to face several common challenges.

He noted that over the recent months, Algeria has become the main gas supplier for Italy.

The visit of Draghi focused on finalizing deals to increase Algerian natural gas supply to Italy to replace the possible cut of Russian gas supply.

On Friday, Algeria announced that it would increase its gas exports to Italy by 4 billion cubic meters. The Algerian energy giant Sonatrach will ensure the delivery of the additional natural gas shipment to its Italian partners, including Eni, according to the official Algeria Press Service.

Algeria has already delivered 13.9 billion cubic meters of gas to Italy so far in 2022. In 2021, the North African country exported 21.2 billion cubic meters of natural gas to Italy.