GPHA to decongest ports
Business News of Wednesday, 13 February 2013
The Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) has introduced some new measures to help decongest the Tema and Takoradi ports to ensure speedy transactions.
In an interview with B&FT, Kumi Adjei-Sam, Marketing and Corporate Affairs Manager, said the issue of delays and slow clearance of items poses a challenge to the ports, hence the need to adopt measures to address the situation.
“Measures taken include the fixing of traffic lights at the ports to regulate and control vehicular traffic, as well as at other vantage points that lead to the port. Working hours on Saturdays as well as scanning periods have all been extended to meet the demands of clients.
“We are vigorously working to get the clearing processes at the port automated. Almost all operational areas are being computerised, with about 1,000 computers deployed for the automation project,” he said.
Mr. Adjei-Sam said management is currently in discussions with stakeholders like the Customs Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS), destination inspection companies as well as freighters and other industry players to reduce bureaucracy at the ports.
“Plans are ongoing to link the activities of all these players involved in the clearance of items at the port onto the GC-Net platform to facilitate rapid and stress-free transactions,” he said.
For the seaward side, Mr. Adjei-Sam said management is dealing with Meridian Ports Services (MPS) and shipping lines to introduce a berthing window where vessels would be allocated slots within the week so as to reduce delays when it comes to anchorage.
“Because of the country’s economic potentials and stable political environment, we had some larger vessels calling to berth at the ports but due to limited capacity, most of them were turned away. The few who came had to compete for the two berths at MPS and this contributes to congestion on both the seaward area and the mainland.
“We believe the introduction of these measures will come in handy to address some of the delays and bureaucracies associated with daily activities at the ports,” Mr. Adjei-Sam noted.