The Director-General of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Michael Lujuge has applauded efforts being made by government to expedite processes leading up to the realization of efficient multimodal linkages that would complement the ongoing massive developments in Ghana’s port infrastructure.
Speaking on Eye on Port on the Status of Ghana’s Ports and their readiness for African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), the DG of GPHA, indicated that the success of every country’s port system is not only seen in the availability of world class port infrastructure, but also the overall efficiency in its hinterland transport systems.
“Trade feeds on distance, time and cost. Connectivity is key. That is why the ideal situation is for you to have multimodal transport. That way, the trader is able to choose from these options the one that best suits him or her in terms of time and money,” he expressed.
He said it is now more needed than ever for Ghana to step up efforts in developing its rail networks and also develop its inland water transport systems to open up opportunities for increased trade as Ghana intends to lead the way in intra-continental trade.
Mr Luguje explained that with a well-oiled rail system in Ghana, the time and cost of carting goods through the hinterlands would be significantly reduced as well as the traffic congestion on the country’s road networks which would make the cost of doing business for importers and exporters cheaper.
He cited the case of Tema Motorway interchange project which has seen phase 1 completed, where goods coming to and from the port are moving at a speedy rate which has relieved economic operators.
Mr Michael Luguje said Ghana’s ports are well positioned to serve as leading trade and logistics hubs in the sub region and that he is excited for the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area.
He revealed that with the completion of the phase 1 of the Terminal 3, the Tema Port is currently the biggest in terms of capacity of all ports in the West and Central Africa.
“We have the biggest container terminal within West and Central Africa. If you look at single terminal volumes that are handled, we were able to do 1 million TEUs at the close of 2018 and 2019. Barring COVID-19, our target was to cross the 1 million mark,” he asserted.
He said this is being complemented by ongoing expansion of the Takoradi Port which includes the upgrading of the dry bulk jetty with conveyor systems, construction of the multipurpose Atlantic Terminal, the completed liquid bulk terminal, and the pending oil and gas services terminal.
“The Liquid Bulk Terminal has the capacity to serve the whole liquid bulk industry for as many years to come” he said.
The Director-General of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, also revealed that these are further boosted by the initiative to construct the Mpakadan Inland Port and the Boankra Integrated Logistics Terminal which will begin soon.