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Nov 17, 2021

The Minister for Transport, Kweku Ofori Asiamah, has revealed that findings of the feasibility studies conducted for the development of the Keta Port, indicate that the Phase 1 of that project would cost around USD 600M.

The Minister disclosed this during a market sounding event on the Keta Port Project development in Accra. The event was also used to extensively engage stakeholders on the outcomes of the feasibility studies as well as draw feedback from them.

The Minister called on the private sector to partner government by bringing in the needed capital, expertise, and efficiencies for the delivery of the project.

Kweku Ofori Asiamah said, “a project of this nature is highly capital intensive and government on its own, may not be able to finance it all, hence the need for the involvement of the private sector. I am informed that some companies have already expressed some interest in participating in the port development. I therefore look forward to the other private sector interests in this project.”

Board Chairman of GPHA, Isaac Osei emphasized the importance of stakeholder involvement in the planning process of the Keta port project.

He said, “our plan is to ensure that no interest party or stakeholder is left out as we get into the subsequent phases of this project, hence our determination to ensure that your inputs are captured and incorporated into what we have.”

The Director General of the Authority, Michael Luguje, stated that the need for a third commercial port in Ghana has been necessitated by the growing demand for intra-regional trade.

The GPHA boss added that, “we have seen that it is a port that is feasible, viable and attractive. If you all go back into the history of many ports, including here in Ghana, you would realise that none of the ports were built on the basis of immediate first- and second-year high profitability. It is a very progressive journey towards building the port.”

During the presentation detailing the findings of the feasibility studies, Project Engineer at GPHA, Komla Ofori, indicated that the project was seen as viable for a potential commercial cargo port that can cater for containerized, bulk and oil & gas, as well as a shipyard facility.

He said following the feasibility studies will be a social and environmental impact assessment early next year. It is after this that the procurement process for investors would begin.

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  • November 17,2021

    The Minister for Transport, Kweku Ofori Asiamah, has revealed that findings of the feasibility studies conducted for the development of the Keta Port, indicate that the Phase 1 of that project would cost around USD 600M.

    The Minister disclosed this during a market sounding event on the Keta Port Project development in Accra. The event was also used to extensively engage stakeholders on the outcomes of the feasibility studies as well as draw feedback from them.

    The Minister called on the private sector to partner government by bringing in the needed capital, expertise, and efficiencies for the delivery of the project.

    Kweku Ofori Asiamah said, “a project of this nature is highly capital intensive and government on its own, may not be able to finance it all, hence the need for the involvement of the private sector. I am informed that some companies have already expressed some interest in participating in the port development. I therefore look forward to the other private sector interests in this project.”

    Board Chairman of GPHA, Isaac Osei emphasized the importance of stakeholder involvement in the planning process of the Keta port project.

    He said, “our plan is to ensure that no interest party or stakeholder is left out as we get into the subsequent phases of this project, hence our determination to ensure that your inputs are captured and incorporated into what we have.”

    The Director General of the Authority, Michael Luguje, stated that the need for a third commercial port in Ghana has been necessitated by the growing demand for intra-regional trade.

    The GPHA boss added that, “we have seen that it is a port that is feasible, viable and attractive. If you all go back into the history of many ports, including here in Ghana, you would realise that none of the ports were built on the basis of immediate first- and second-year high profitability. It is a very progressive journey towards building the port.”

    During the presentation detailing the findings of the feasibility studies, Project Engineer at GPHA, Komla Ofori, indicated that the project was seen as viable for a potential commercial cargo port that can cater for containerized, bulk and oil & gas, as well as a shipyard facility.

    He said following the feasibility studies will be a social and environmental impact assessment early next year. It is after this that the procurement process for investors would begin.


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  • November 10,2021

    The General Manager, Estate and Environment at the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, James Benjamin Gaisie has intimated the readiness of state agencies in streamlining their activities towards efficient provision of waste reception services at the ports of Ghana.

    Speaking on Eye on Port, Mr. Gaisie revealed that several consultations have been held to get state agencies playing their respective roles at the ports to appreciate the importance of quick turnaround of vessels to the maritime trade and this has yielded positive results so far.

    The General Manager in Charge of Estate and Environment at GPHA said these actions were necessitated by the realization that certain statutory activities by these agencies inadvertently end up causing delays to waste reception services at the ports.

    Mr. Gaisie explained that “some of our service providers also engage in other activities apart from the waste reception. They may be licensed to take waste, but they could be licensed by another entity to engage in some other activity. For example, handle petroleum products. Because petroleum products are commercial in nature, it has duty implications. Because of this, Customs wants to scrutinize their activities for good reason. So even if they have taken waste, Customs is interested. And they put in measures to ensure that they are well scrutinized, so they do not potentially evade tax. That started to create problems.”

    He said this relatively newer practice, eventually affected vessels’ waiting time, as waste management service providers had to go through the necessary customs procedures before getting clearance to work.

    He said it is the Port Authority’s objective to ensure that none of such auxiliary operations like waste reception causes undue delays to cargo vessels. In that same light, the Operations Manager of one of the waste management service providers at the Port of Tema, Ecostar, Samuel Addy cited the implications of delay on the shipping business.

    Mr. Samuel Addy said “people are only aware of demurrage when it comes to containers but there is also demurrage on vessels. If the authorities appreciate that anytime a vessel on time charter comes to ports, it has to be served and go as soon as possible.”

    He lamented the approval process that take place before they can conduct their waste reception activities.

    “After we have boarded the vessel to ascertain the level of waste we are going to work with, you have to approach the authorities with letters asking for permission to be able to work on the vessel. The permits will come from GPHA, Customs and National Security. It is only after that we can mobilize logistics to work with,” Mr. Addy disclosed.

    He stated that it has been difficult for officials of state authorities to appreciate the urgency on the ground, and this has often culminated in long waiting time to acquire these approvals.

    Mr. Addy however expressed relief to hear that the state agencies are collaborating to ease up the process in order to promote efficient delivery of the waste reception services at the port.

    The MARPOL 73/78 Convention of the International Maritime Organisation requires State Parties to ensure the provision of adequate reception facilities in ports to handle operational and domestic waste discharge from vessels in an environmentally friendly manner.

    It is in abiding by this international best practice that GPHA has partnered licensed waste management companies to provide this service.


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  • November 10,2021

    The Executive Coordinator of the Port Environmental Network – Africa (PENAf), Dr. Harry Barnes-Dabban has commended the efforts made by the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority to remain proactive in its approach towards sustainable port and shipping operations.

    The Executive Coordinator of PENAf was full of praise particularly for GPHA’s implementation of the MARPOL 73/78 protocol in 2004 even before the Republic of Ghana officially domesticated the international convention.

    He said, “this GPHA story has not been highlighted enough. Normally international conventions would have to be domesticated before you take action to implement. The Port Authority at the time did not wait for the country because they identified themselves with the international situation because IMO is for us all. This doesn’t happen in most cases. It is one of the best practices that should be shared for Port Authorities to know. Most Port Authorities have some level of autonomy to initiate their own action.”

    The International environmental consultant, who was speaking on the Eye on Port programme, added that the indirect method of charging vessels who call the ports environmental fee is one that is gradually being adopted globally.

    Dr. Barnes-Dabban indicated that, “even in Europe they are now moving towards this indirect system of payment even though they have existed for these many years. I guess Ghana has taken the lead in some of these things.”

    He explained that “the Port Authority charges this fee to all vessels, whether you have waste to pay or not. If you compare this practice to some places in Africa and other places, ships only pay for waste that they discharge under a direct fee system. That encourages ships to not discharge properly at ports. This defeats the spirit of MARPOL which wants to prevent shipping pollution.”

    Also touching on the subject, the General Manager in charge of Estate and Environment at the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, James Benjamin Gaisie reinforced Dr. Barnes-Dabbans' assertion and opined that this indirect payment system demotivates vessels’ crew from dumping their waste improperly, because “they pay for it regardless. There’s no way a shipping line will pay for service and refuse to be served.”

    Mr. Gaisie said the fee is one that is not profit-oriented but rather to cater for the service.

    “In determining the fee to be charged, the cost is only for handling the waste and disposal. There is no profit element in this, so the port isn’t even directly benefitting from this.”

    The General Manager, Estate and Environment at GPHA also said it was in line with the government’s policy to empower the private sector in port operations that the Authority ceded the delivery of waste management services to private companies.

    He however noted that rigorous procedures are adopted by the port to ensure that the operators are licensed and have the adequate capacity to execute the said function.

    Mr. Gaisie said, “they had to provide infrastructure and equipment to handle this waste. To ensure that the objective of reducing or minimizing pollution by vessels, all the companies that were given the concession did an environmental impact assessment and obtained a permit from EPA. In that way EPA would be directly monitoring the process to ensure the collection, treatment and disposal have followed the national waste regulations.”

    The representative from the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority said the Authority has made deliberate efforts to have regular consultation and meetings with various stakeholders in the port to further streamline their activities so as to ensure these waste management services are provided at optimal efficiency.

    The International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973 as modified by the Protocol of 1978 (MARPOL) is one of the most important international marine environmental conventions.

    It was developed by the International Maritime Organization with an objective to minimize pollution of the oceans and seas, including dumping, oil, and air pollution.


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  • November 04,2021

    The 25th Intermodal Africa 2021 Conference and Exhibition has been held in Accra, bringing together world class speakers and key players from the continent’s transport and logistics industry.

    The 2-day event was hosted by the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority with support from the Meridian Ports Services Ltd (MPS). Discussion centred around contributions transport and logistics can make to enhance global supply chains.

    The participants also gave particular focus to ways to link trade opportunities in the Middle East, Europe, and Africa in contributing towards the economic development in the West African subregion.

    During the opening ceremony, the Director General of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Michael Luguje urged all participants to indulge each other towards providing practical ideas that can help the industry thrive.

    He noted that “in Ghana the port sector is evolving, and I would also like to let you know that we made significant progress and our country is very resilient when it comes to the economy. And we are happy about that.”

    Delivering the keynote address, Minister of Transport, Kweku Ofori Asiamah, urged the various players to implement a holistic and strategic response for an enhanced transport connectivity that goes beyond traditional solutions.

    The Minister also urged players to work out effective methods to create a resilient transport and logistics sector as well as solve incessant congestions suffered in many ports worldwide.

    Kweku Ofori Asiamah said, “we need to improve cargo movement through a resilient logistics and supply chain sector while enriching customer experience and shaping next generation port industry through technology and automation.

    A lot of ports are facing severe congestions and backlog as a result of the imbalance posed by the uncertainty of COVID-19.

    Therefore, it is our duty to come up with new ways of preparing the ports and maritime logistics chain to meet the exigencies of future challenges.”


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  • November 04,2021

    The Tema Fishing Harbour has been host to a historic ceremony as it witnessed its fair share of the ongoing Queen’s baton relay, that took place in selected places of cultural significance across the country.

    The activity similar to the Olympic Torch Relay is organised before the beginning of the Commonwealth Games.

    Next year’s games will be held in Birmingham between July and August.

    The baton relay, which began in October 2021, is expected to travel across all 72 nations and territories of the Commonwealth carrying Queen Elizabeth II’s message.

    It is a symbolic event that signifies unity and sportsmanship among the various participating commonwealth states.

    Speaking to Eye on Port, the 2nd Vice President of the Ghana Olympic Committee, Frederick Lartey Otu explained that the Fishing Harbour was selected due to the socio-cultural significance fishing has on the people of the Tema traditional area, as well as the economic significance of the Port of Tema to the nation.

    The Chief fishermen who participated in the relay ceremony expressed joy over the experience. “It brings us joy to know that we were recognised in such an international event taking place all over the world.

    We are glad to know we are participating in an event that would take Ghana’s name far,” Nii Ajietey Mator III, the Chief Fisherman, Ashaiman, Tema expressed.

    The Queen’s baton toured Ghana for three days. It was first carried from the Jubilee House to the British High Commission, with Ghana’s first runner being President Akufo-Addo.


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  • October 26,2021

    The MARPOL 73/78 Convention requires States Parties to ensure the provision of adequate reception facilities in ports to handle operational and domestic waste discharge from vessels in an environmentally friendly manner.

    To this end, the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority in carrying out that mandate in conjunction with licensed private environmental waste management companies to provide efficient services to vessels calling the port.

    However, these procedures are impeded by some bottlenecks borne from the fragmented nature of institutions carrying out their sole mandates in the port.

    To reach workable solutions, a stakeholder engagement has been held among these key institutions in the port on the provision of port reception facilities under the MARPOL 73/78 convention.

    Officials from the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Ghana Maritime Authority, National Petroleum Authority, Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority and private waste management companies met to assess how to adjust their operations to create the desired synergy necessary to implement the IMO convention while delivering on their institutional mandate.

    Speaking at the forum, the General Manager, Estate and Environment at GPHA, James Benjamin Gaisie, explained that improved collaboration is geared at the ultimate goal of vessels being able to discharge waste at the port without delay.

    “We thought is wise to bring these stakeholders together to discuss openly to fashion the way forward to run these facilities smoothly without any hitches. This is because the vessel would not want to be delayed when it comes to the port. It wants prompt services.”

    The Executive Coordinator for Ports Environmental Network Africa (PENAf), Dr. Harry Barnes-Dabban, facilitators of the forum, praised Ghana’s ports for staying in line with International Conventions and called for increased capacity building for sustainability.

    Dr. Barnes-Dabban said, “Ghana’s ports are already on course. The port took an initiative ahead of the state by implementing the convention. Now the focus should be updating the skills and knowledge. And also, because it affects other stakeholders, the need to institutionalize stakeholder governance.”


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  • October 26,2021

    The Director General of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Michael Luguje has argued that the Port of Keta, when constructed would be economically viable, due to the commercial dynamics in the maritime trade.

    He explained that “trade is not conservative. Trade is always looking for access, facilitation, competitiveness, and convenience. That is why at the everyday market, you will find many stalls selling the same product and being successful despite being next to each other. In that same way, a shipping line investing its own resources in a port, like Lomé for example is still interested in investing in other neighboring ports. This means they have worked out the economics and realized that concentrating in just one port would not be the best economically. They would rather be present in each port. Because each country has its special advantage.”

    “Ghana’s economy is much bigger than Togo, so if a shipping line is present in Lomé, they’d probably be looking at cargoes not only coming to Lomé, but to other regions. But for Ghana, you would have the opportunity of having way more cargoes bound for Ghana in addition to ones bound for other countries. From the economic point of view, there are a lot of positives that prove Keta is viable.” Mr. Luguje further averred.

    The Director General of GPHA also explained the events surrounding the initial proposal Diamond Cement presented for the development of a port facility in Keta.

    “Diamond wanted to get a jetty in Keta with deeper berth to accommodate bigger vessels than what they use in Lomé and even cart the clinker by road to the factory, it would be more profitable. That is why despite their investment in rail, they were prepared to come and invest in Keta.”

    Michael Luguje however said, GPHA could not have given Diamond Cement the right to operate and own a private port, per the laws of Ghana, hence that deal was not able to go through as initially envisaged by the company.

    “They thought with the level in investment they were going to make, they had to own the port as a private facility. We told them that they can invest in the port, and based on the size of their investment, we could give a longer concession term that would give them all the protection they need. That delayed the MOU we signed with them. During the feasibility studies however, they were engaged extensively to let them know, government would invest in the fundamental port works, and the Keta Port master plan could accommodate a Diamond Cement Terminal, so it is not dead.”

    The GPHA Boss was speaking during a Stakeholder meeting with the Ben Kwao Group, an association of indigenes and ambassadors of the Keta township, who visited the Port Authority to acquaint themselves with the Keta Port project.

    The Director in Charge of the Keta Port Project, Dr. Alexander Yaw Adusei said the port project, is of utmost priority to the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, but asked interest parties to exercise patience as such a mega project takes calculated processes to be successfully executed.

    “The major part of a port project is planning. At this point we are willing to listen to all suggestions that can help make the project a success for the people of Keta and the Volta and Oti regions. So, we need to unite as a family to get this project done. This is the closest we have come to realizing this project,” Dr. Adusei encouraged.

    Project Engineer, Komla Ofori, revealed however that the general feasibility outlay has been done with environmental and social impact assessment pending.

    John Klinogo, the Vice Chairman of the Ben Kwao Group described the engagement as an eye-opener in understanding the processes that lead to the completion of a port.

    “We now know that when you are doing a project of this size, you need time to do your feasibility studies. Naïve as some of us are, as soon as we heard Keta Port, and that a director has been appointed, then surely there must be some excavation and dredging works ongoing. But it is not so,” he told Eye on Port.

    He doubled up on the call for patience to be exercised while the requisite background work is duly undertaken by the experts.


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  • October 20,2021

    The Director General of the Ghana Ports and Harbors Authority, Michael Luguje has assured the port community and Ghanaians in general of a bright future for the ports of Ghana as management pursues initiatives that would guarantee continued success.

    Speaking at this year’s GPHA Strategic Management Summit in the outskirts of Accra, he emphasized his optimism for growth, while recounting some of the challenges of past few years.

    “Our last strategic meeting was 2019, where we couldn’t plan properly because we weren’t so sure. Because reefer containers were gone and a number of container volumes we are handling today, there was not certain then, whether we were going to have them. So, we couldn’t plan for equipment, we couldn’t plan for staff. Everything was uncertain,” the Director General revealed.

    The Strategic Management Meeting is a major activity the leadership of the Authority undertakes to review performance and plan for the future taking into consideration critical changes in the port business.

    The GPHA Boss said Management over the past few years had to work assiduously to enhance capacity and productivity for business continuity.

    He revealed that as a result of the strong collaboration between management and staff, the Authority was able to cut cost and create employment.

    “A major strategic reform we took, never heard of in GPHA history where we decided to tackle the problem of overtime. We tackled it, ensuring that everybody, both labor and management participated in the reasoning behind it and we have used that savings to also tackle a national crisis, which is unemployment,” the DG said.

    Michael Luguje assured clients of the port of improved efficiency through key strategic reforms as well as tightened collaborations with stakeholders.

    He cited that “for example, there is scheduling that is going to be done for reefer containers. But we are not going to dictate that. We are going to do that in collaboration with the freight forwarders. That way, everyone would be certain and satisfied with their schedule and that would take away the crumbling in the evenings alone at the Reefer Yard.”


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  • October 20,2021

    The governing Board of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) has paid familiarization visits to the Port of Takoradi and the Keta Port project site.

    The visit of the governing Board led by the Hon. Isaac Osei was to afford the reconstituted Board the opportunity to learn at first hand, the extent of work at the Takoradi port which is undergoing massive transformation through various expansion projects and to also get briefings from Engineers of the Authority on the Keta Port Project.

    In Takoradi, the GPHA board was conducted round the various projects including the Liquid Bulk Terminal, the Dry Bulk Terminal, and the Atlantic Container Terminal.

    The Board Chairman of the GPHA, the Hon. Isaac Osei expressed satisfaction at the current state of works at the port.

    He said, “work done here is very impressive. GPHA’s job is to make sure that the infrastructure is there which they have done by working with their partners. Now it is up to the business community to take advantage of the facilities that have been provided.”

    The Director-General of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Michael Luguje said the expansion works in the port of Takoradi is indicative of the fact that GPHA is mindful of the future, hence the investment in such huge infrastructure which will transcend generations.

    “By this massive container terminal project that is ongoing, we are already getting a lot of interests from global container shipping lines wanting to join us in partnerships to move a lot of volumes here. The potential to bring the volumes is wide,” Michael Luguje disclosed.

    In Keta, the team called on the Awomefia of the Anlo Traditional Area, Togbi Sri and his sub chiefs before proceeding to the Project site.

    Togbi Sri assured the Board of his commitment to the project and promised to lend any support required of him when the need arises.


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  • October 20,2021

    The Board Chairman of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Mr. Isaac Osei has stated that Ghana’s Ports are well positioned not only to be the gateway to trade in the sub region but also as transit point for the landlocked countries.

    This, according to him, is as a result of the fact that other countries prefer the services of Ghana’s Ports due to the availability of the requisite infrastructure and quality of service delivery. Mr. Osei said this when the reconstituted board of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority paid a working visit to the Port of Tema.

    He was optimistic that equipment challenges at the Ports would be resolved saying ‘’the Director General of GPHA, Mr. Michael Luguje is determined on that score.’’

    He said he intends to bring his experience in both and public and private sectors of the economy to bare as he leads the GPHA Board. He commended the staff and management of GPHA who he said are qualified to undertake the mandate of the Port.

    The Director General of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Michael Luguje said the Port Authority will continue to provide the needed infrastructure and business environment for trade facilitation and economic development.

    He said the growth in container traffic in 2020 and the first half of 2021 is a testament of confidence in Ghana’s economy. He revealed that there is a joint effort from stakeholders to ensure that arbitrary charges at the Ports are scrapped.

    The GPHA Board took a tour of the Port of Tema to enable them to have first-hand experience of operations in the Port.

    The board members visited the Marine Section, Golden Jubilee Terminal, Reefer Terminal and the MPS terminal 3.

    The Board were later introduced to top management of the authority followed by an interactive session which included an orientation on the operations of GPHA.

    The presentations included an overview of the Port Authority, the status of the Authority’s finances and updates on projects capturing old and new projects spanning Tema, Takoradi and Keta.


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