A-two day African Ports Evolution, West Africa edition forum, has opened in Accra with the call for regulation and competitiveness to control the industry.
The forum was designed to provide West African government, terminal operators, port authorities and service providers up to date information on port expansion and development plans in West Africa.
It was also to provide critical insight into doing business in the region’s ports as well as highlighting the opportunities from in the oil and gas sectors.
Mr Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, the Nigerian Transport Minister speaking at the opening ceremony said technology is critical in the maritime industry to facilitate information sharing among stakeholders.
He called on various port authorities to introduce competitiveness in the industry to enhance effective trade facilitation.
The Nigerian Minister said the west African sub-region needed integration through connectivity of ports to promote economic development in the various countries.
He called on participants to deliberate on the improvement on port development to facilitate effective trade relations.
“Governments on the sub-region are waiting for the outcome of the forum as a road map to development the maritime industry,” he added.
Mr Jacob Adorkor, Port Director, Tema Ports said a $1.5 billion port expansion was due to commence in October.
He said the project when completed would have a new container terminal, food and fruit terminal, transit and trans-shipment terminal, passenger terminal, oil service terminal and break, dry and liquid bulk terminal.
He said these improvements would enhance the Port’s competitiveness and position it as a leading maritime hub in the West African region.
The Tema port has introduced scanning of equipment regime to facilitate trade and has also invested heavily in security systems for safety purposes.
“We have localised GPS surveillance systems introduced to improve cargo and vehicular operations at the Port,” he added.
He said management of Tema Port has forged collaboration with Ghana High Authority and other partners to improve on transportation to the Port.
Participating organisations include Amaris Terminal Limited, Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, Department of Maritime Management Technology, Nigeria Federal Ministry of Transport, Ghana Maritime Authority and Ghana National Chamber of Commerce, Ghana Police Services and Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority.
The rest are Ghana Revenue Authority, Institute of Freight Forwarders, Ghana Export Promotion Authority, Port Authority of Cotonou, Port Autonome Conakry, Port Autonome de Douala, Port Autonome San Pedro, Port of Djibouti, Ghana Ministry of Transport, Nigerian Ports Authority, Takoradi Port, Tema Port and The Nigerian Institute of Shipping.