Business News of Friday, 1 December 2017
Source: Solomon Anderson
Ghana Maritime Authority, is the state institution that ensures safety and security of the Ghana Maritime territorial waters and also responsible for the regulation of inland waterways and their transportation. The state agency also oversees matters relating to the training, recruitment and welfare of Ghanaian seafarers.
To this end, Members of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Roads and Transport have paid a working visit to the Ghana Maritime Authority to familiarize themselves with their operations.
Members of the committee who seek to familiarize with projects being undertaken by the Maritime Authority as well as their challenges and progress made so far, were received by the Director General of the Ghana Maritime Authority, Kwame Owusu and his management staff.
The Chairman of the Committee on Roads and Transport, Samuel Ayeh-Paye, commended the Maritime Authority for ensuring the safety and security of ships and port facilities in Ghana’s maritime domain leading to increased vessels coming in from neighbouring countries and improving the maritime industry of Ghana.
“They work hand in hand with The Ghana Navy, The Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority and other stakeholders in the maritime industry and I think they are okay, except that they have mentioned some of the equipment they would need to help them to monitor as far as 5 to 10,000 nautical miles. That is exactly what they want to do now. So we have seen how best we can collaborate with the oil fields there”, the Chairman disclosed in an interview with journalists.
The Director-General of the Ghana Maritime Authority, Kwame Owusu noted that although there has been inadequate funding for maritime projects, the sea trade has not been heavily affected as countries continue to transact Business in the Ghanaian waters.
“We have been able to put the structures in place that all the vessel owners are quite sure that Ghana is safe. I had mentioned earlier that, if you go to our anchorage now, you would find a lot of vessels waiting to berth in Nigeria, Cotonou, and even Cote d’Ivoire. It is because our Security system has made it safe to be here and so we want to continue to enjoy that and make sure we protect our waters”, the Director General of GMA assured.
He again disclosed to the committee that Ghana Maritime Authority is in the process of reviewing and regularizing the Ghana Maritime Authority Fees and charges (LI 2009) with particular reference to the First Schedule Regulation of 15 cents to 50 cents as safety charges by Ship Owners.
“We have actually done a lot of consultations with the ship owners and the stakeholders at large and we have come to an agreement that it is important that we put some measures in place”, he confirmed.