Transport Minister, Kweku Ofori Asiamah, has said government is leaving no stone unturned in its quest to achieve a complete automated clearance regime at the country’s ports of entry and exit.
“Government is committed to ensuring that as a country we achieve a complete automated clearance regime and shall not entertain any deliberate acts or collusion on the parts of elements within the process to frustrate its successful implementation,” he said.
Speaking at the second edition of the Ghana Shippers Awards, Mr. Asiamah, said the Ministry of Transport remains committed to ensuring that the ports and other transport linkages achieve the highest level of efficiency in order to create the enabling business environment for the benefit of all stakeholders in the maritime trade and transport industry.
“Although there have been some drastic transformation in our clearance processes with the implementation of the paperless port system, government is not oblivious of some of the inherent challenges that confront the system.
It is for this reason that the Vice President of the Republic Ghana, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia announced just last week the formation of a taskforce to review the operations of the paperless port system to improve revenue collection, increase efficiency and control corruption,” he said.
He noted that the maritime industry remains one of the most critical sectors of Ghana’s economy, accounting for over 90percent of Ghana’s international trade and contributes significantly to the fortunes of many industries from sourcing of raw materials to ensuring that the entire logistics and trade value chain is sustained.
Benonita B. Bismarck, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Shippers’ Authority, added that the authority, in collaboration with the Ship Owners and Agents Association of Ghana (SOAAG), GRA-Customs Division and the Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders has intensified efforts at educating shippers on how to avoid demurrage in order to further reduce the payment of demurrage this year.
“It is not in the interest of shipping lines to collect demurrage; their aim is to turn around their containers timeously to grow their business globally,” she added. She pointed out that the implementation of the paperless regime about a year ago has contributed immensely to the quick clearing of cargo at the country’s ports.
The 2018 edition of the awards scheme seeks to recognize the contribution of shippers, mainly companies in the export trade for their contribution to national development. Several new award categories such as importer and exporter of the year for the types of trade (Liner, Break Bulk, Dry Bulk, Liquid Bulk) have been introduced.
The awarding body has also introduced categories for non-traditional exports such as handicrafts, fruit/vegetables, cocoa products, indigenous alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
The awards night saw over 40 companies and individuals walk away with several awards. They include the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, DHL Ghana Limited, Aramex Ghana Limited, Consolidated Shipping Agencies Limited, Air Ghana Limited, Grimaldi Ghana Limited, Golden Jubilee Terminal, OMA Ghana Limited, Amaris Terminal Limited, Transglobal Logistics, McDan Shipping Company Limited, Apex Shipping and Commercial Co. Limited, Ghana Rubber Estate Limited and Kingdom Exim Ghana Ltd.
Others are Ghana Communication Network Services Limited (GCNet), Ecobank, Star Assurance, SwissPort Company Limited, Sea and Shore Services Ghana Limited, Sevenlog, Axiss Shipping, BenMarine, West Blue Consulting, BajFreight, Jonmoore International, Goldfields Ghana Limited, Electricity Company of Ghana, Tullow Ghana Limited, Blue Skies Products Ghana Limited, Cocoa Marketing Company, B5 Plus, Delata Ghana Limited, , Kasapreko Ghana Limited, Cargill Ghana Limited, Borderless Alliance and Eye On Port.
Under the special recognition award for SMEs, Kofata Motors, Baffoe Essilfie Ent, Serboat Electricals Co. Ltd, Oscarpak Enterprise Ltd, Andy ‘D’ Enterprise, Rutabe Phones, and Gafkwa Phones. The winners of the 2017 Most Transparent Shippers are Cocoa Marketing Company, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation, Tullow Ghana and Newmont Ghana Limited.
With individual awards, Della Russel Ocloo from Daily Graphic won the Reporter of the Year; Bernard Lomotey Agbloe from Benmarine walked away with the Personality of the Year; Isaac Amoako-Mensah from CAGL Logistics won the Promising Entrepreneur of the Year; Richard Gaisie won the Promising CEO of the Year; MacDonald Vasnani, CEO of Conship won the Entrepreneur of the Year and Daniel McKorley, McDan Shipping Company won the CEO of the Year.
The awards scheme was organized by Globe Productions with Ghana Shippers’ Authority and Graphic Communications serving as collaborators.