The Algerian Oil Minister, Youcef Yousfi, stated that the country will start looking for unconventional gas deposits and study the use of nuclear power in an effort to diversify its energy sources, Inter fax Energy reported.

The country is still weighing options to meet its long-term energy demands. However, Yousfi added: “we are going to intensify exploration in the near future, especially in regions that haven’t been explored yet. We are going to look for oil and gas in shale and compact formations.”

Yousfi’s comments come as Algeria struggles to continue relying on conventional gas to produce power. Therefore, the country aims to speed up the introduction of renewable energy sources, particularly solar, wind and geothermal power. The government will begin studies on nuclear power with a view to adopting it within about 10 years , according to Bloomberg.

Algeria, a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, has a production capacity of 1.4mb/d of oil and exports about 60bcm a year of natural gas. It is the fourth-largest oil producer in Africa and the third-largest supplier of gas to Europe, after Russia and Norway. The North African nation relies on oil and gas for the majority of its foreign-currency revenue.