Länderna Afrika söder om Sahara blir allt mer medvetna om att det är frihandel inom regionen som är vägen framåt.
Punch skriver om Aliko Dangote, entreprenör från Nigeria, anses vara Afrikas rikaste man. Vid ett tal i London betonade han just frihandel inom Afrika och dessutom möjligheterna att investera.
Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, has called for conscious efforts at deepening the continent’s regional market by African investors and governments to aid its rapid growth and development.
Speaking during ‘One to One Conversation’ at the ongoing 5th Annual Financial Times African Summit in London, United Kingdom on Monday, the Nigerian entrepreneur said the key to Africa’s economic growth and strength was in the development of the regional market, saying, “Regional markets in Africa must work.”
Dangote said Africans must patronise the continent’s markets, which was why the free trade agreements by African nations were the direction to go to strengthen the markets.
Citing his own experience, the President of the Dangote Group referred to the case of neighbouring Benin Republic, which continues to import cement from China, while his Nigerian factory was only 35 miles away from the border.
“We need to trade with ourselves”, Dangote stated as he spoke glowingly about the prospect of the African economy, the free trade agreement and the availability of huge raw materials to attract investors.
Prompted by the Editor, Financial Times, Lionel Barber, to speak about difficult markets like Tanzania and Ethiopia, Dangote dismissed the issue of difficulty, stating, “Our aim is to always provide jobs and worth. As an African investor, I don’t want any investor anywhere in Africa to have a bad experience.”
Dangote repeated his mantra for African growth, urging the reduction of exports of raw materials to other continents, but creation of greater wealth within African economies.”