The Egypt international beat out Liverpool team-mate Sadio Mane, along with highly-regarded Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly – both of whom feature for Senegal.
Juventus and Morocco defender Medhi Benatia and Atletico Madrid and Ghana midfielder Thomas Partey rounded out the shortlist for the award, which had been compiled by a panel of African experts.
“It’s a great feeling. I would like to win it also next year,” Salah told the BBC after his victory.
“I think there’s many [great] moments in 2018. The game against Tottenham was top and the game against Roma here was also unbelievable.
“I feel like I’m scoring goals, helping the team to get the points to be top in the league and that’s always a great feeling.”
Salah enjoyed a record setting season with Liverpool last year, breaking the Premier League mark for goals in a 38-game season with 32. He finished with an impressive 44 goals across all competitions last season, helping lead the Reds to the Champions League final.