Moroccan Prime Minister and billionaire businessman Aziz Akhannouch experienced a notable decline in his net worth during the first quarter of 2023, along with other high-net-worth individuals, who also faced significant drops in their fortunes during this period.
Akhannouch, whose wealth primarily stems from Akwa Group, a diversified Moroccan conglomerate with oil and gas interests, witnessed a decrease of $400 million in his net worth during the first quarter of 2023.
Despite the downturn in his net worth, Aziz Akhannouch, who assumed the office of Moroccan prime minister in September 2021, remains the wealthiest billionaire in the country, surpassing billionaire banker Othman Benjelloun.
In addition to the revaluation of his stake in Akwa Group, the marked reduction in Akhannouch’s net worth can be attributed to the performance of his shares in Afriquia Gaz SA, a Moroccan company focused on the refining and distribution of liquefied petroleum gas.
Since the start of the year, shares of Afriquia Gaz on the Casablanca bourse have declined from MAD4,650 ($454.64) to MAD3,900 ($381.29) due to persistent selling pressure from local investors.
Nevertheless, Akhannouch’s investment in Maghreb Oxygene has proven resilient against the downward trend in his net worth, with shares in the Moroccan chemical firm rising from MAD244.75 ($23.9) at the start of the year to MAD272 ($26.6) at the time of writing.
The year-to-date surge in Maghreb Oxygene’s stock price is particularly impressive given the company’s recent financial results, which revealed a decrease in profits from MAD17.97 million ($1.75 million) in 2021 to MAD15.26 million ($1.5 million) in 2022, despite an increase in revenue from MAD274.13 million ($26.8 million) to MAD291.04 million ($28.5 million).