Africa must cut reliance on food imports, says Nigerian billionaire
Nigerian tycoon, Aliko Dangote has urged African governments to diversify food import dependency.
In an exclusive interview with NewsOne, the man behind the continent’s largest food company, Aliko Dangote, said there was no reason why Africa couldn’t become self-sufficient in food. The entrepreneur, who was presented with the 2018 International Prize for Leadership in Agriculture by the Kenyan government, told NewsOne that imports was the only reason why the continent imports so much food. He said African countries should diversify their food imports to grow locally. A member of the Forbes World’s Billionaires List, Dangote’s company, Dangote Foods, is Africa’s largest food exporter. He is the fourth richest person in the world.
According to Dangote, the primary factor as to why Africa is reliant on food imports is poor infrastructure. “Infrastructure is the primary reason for the dependency on imported food. Africa is a continent in which people have always relied on food imports and the only reason why we import food is a result of poor infrastructure which has been in place for years.
We have to diversify our food import dependency because we have no option of farming locally,” said Dangote, who is also a member of the Dangote Group, a conglomerate which has investments in a range of sectors.
Dangote warned that African countries were reliant on food imports. “The current generation is not willing to grow anything other than food. That is the reason why they are dependent on food imports.” He also reminded that the continent did not have the capacity to produce enough food to meet its food demand.
“The current generation is not working to produce something different. They are not working to make this continent self-sufficient and that is why they are dependent on