Algeria has discovered over 300 new fuel sites since nationalisation of the country’s petroleum industry in 1971, Energy Minister Mines Youcef Yousfi said on Wednesday. Over 20 of that number were unearthed in 2012, he added. State-owned company Sonatrach contributed to last year’s discoveries, in partnership with international companies. Sonatrach drilled 19 new fuel sources in 2012. According to Yousfi, production will begin at the new el-Merk oil field in Illizi later this year, following the opening of fields close to Menzel Ledjmet East one month ago. Algerian oil revenue has produced approximately $800bn in the last 40 years, Energy Minister Yousfi claimed.