Aziz Akhannouch, Morocco’s richest man, faces staggering $500-million loss in 2023

Aziz Akhannouch, the prime minister of Morocco and the country’s wealthiest individual, has experienced a significant decline in his net worth, resulting in a loss of half a billion dollars since the year began.

The downward trend in his petroleum, gas, and chemical assets has had a substantial impact on his overall wealth.

Akhannouch, the majority owner of Akwa Group, a renowned Casablanca-based billion-dollar conglomerate, has seen his net worth dwindle from $2 billion on Jan. 1 to $1.5 billion at present, marking a decline of $500 million.

The loss exceeds the $400-million setback that he encountered in the first quarter of 2023 by $100 million. In the first quarter of 2023, his net worth fell by $400 million from $2 billion to $1.6 billion between January and March.

The decrease in Akhannouch’s net worth can be attributed to the revaluation of his holdings in Akwa Group, a diverse Moroccan conglomerate with substantial oil and gas interests.

Additionally, the market value of his stake in Afriquia Gaz SA, a Moroccan company focused on the refining and distribution of liquefied petroleum gas, has slumped, further contributing to his declining fortunes.

Since the start of the year, the shares of Afriquia Gaz on the Casablanca bourse have experienced a decline from MAD4,650 ($455) to MAD3,920 ($382).

The downward trend reflects investors’ decisions to sell off their stakes in the group as part of an effort to minimize their exposure to the conglomerate.

Despite experiencing a staggering half-a-billion-dollar decline in his net worth, Akhannouch, who assumed the office of Moroccan prime minister in September 2021, retains his position as the richest billionaire in the country, surpassing billionaire banker Othman Benjelloun.

With a present net worth of $1.5 billion, Akhannouch remains one of Africa’s most affluent billionaires. Forbes has ranked him as the 1,973rd richest individual globally, emphasizing his continued prominence on the international wealth landscape.

Omokolade Ajayi
Omokolade Ajayi
Omokolade Ajayi is a financial reporter at Billionaires.Africa. Previously, he worked as a journalist at Nairametrics. Omokolade is a seasoned financial analyst and reporter with in-depth knowledge of and expertise in equity markets, and financial and economic analysis. He has a degree in economics and is a certificate holder of the CFA Institute’s Investment Foundation Program.

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