Nigerian industrialist, Aliko Dangote has announced that he will diversify his investments to the United States to avoid the risk of naira fluctuations.
The richest man in Africa made this known while speaking on the David Rubenstein Show on Bloomberg, on Thursday.
Dangote explained that the diversification will use the New York base and an existing one in London to become more global his $12 billion Lagos refinery is completed.
The 650,000 barrel-a-day refinery which is under construction will add to his $4.3 billion fortune on the back of investments in cement, flour and sugar.
His decision is due to the prices dip in crude oil leading to the fall in Nigeria’s foreign exchange earnings.
“In Africa, you know we have issues of devaluation, so we want to really preserve some of the family’s wealth,” he told Bloomberg.
The naira has continued to come under pressure against the dollar in recent years. At the Investors’ & Exporters’ (I&E) windows, the naira depreciated by 0.49 per cent to close at N363.49/$ from N361.7/$ although the local currency has stayed around N306.95/$ at the official market.
According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, the 62-year-old Nigerian businessman is ranked as the 95th wealthiest man in the world.
His conglomerate, Dangote Industries, includes the Lagos-listed Dangote Cement Plc and four other publicly traded companies under the Dangote umbrella that account for more than a fifth of the value of the Nigerian stock exchange.
Gross external reserves declined further by 1.16 per cent to $39.24 billion from $39.7 billion at the beginning of the month. The sustained decline in external reserves led to a reduction in Nigeria’s import cover from 9.88 months.