Takoradi Port has reduced its anchorage fees from US$0.0187/metric tonnes (mt) to $0.015/mt to help in the cost of doing business at the port.
Also, negotiations to review downward water supply charges at the port, and to ensure effective and efficient delivery for its clients, are at an advanced stage.
“We are committed to transforming the way we operate to continuously improve our services to you,” Capt. Ebenezer Afedzi, Director of Takoradi Port, said at a stakeholder cocktail party in Takoradi.
“Our gathering here is also to assure you of management’s commitment to continuously invest in both facilities and operations to facilitate a quick, cost-effective and safe environment for business; also, it is to update you with key highlights of strategic decisions/implementations in 2018,” he said.
He stated that total port annual traffic recorded in 2017 was 8 million m/t, but as at end of October 2018 the port had recorded 7.3 million m/t of traffic.
“We believe that by the end of December 2018, the 8million m/t annual traffic recorded in 2017 will have been exceeded,” he added.
According to him, vessel calls also increased by 200 – representing 15% growth. “It must be noted that the increase in vessels calls is largely due to calls by supply vessels servicing Ghana’s oil/gas-fields, which recorded an increase of 33% from 742 in 2017 to 983 calls within the same period in 2018.”
On highlights of some of activities at the port, Capt. Afedzi said an additional 200m of quay wall for the new bulk jetty was handed over to the port by contractor Jan de Nul (JDN), bringing the total operational quay wall to 600m.
He said funds were also secured for construction of the remaining 200m of quay wall for the new bulk jetty.
“All things being equal, it will be handed over by end of April 2019, signifying completion of the whole 800m quay wall for the new bulk jetty.” he said
He pointed out that: “The Port continues to provide cost-efficient operations to the oil and gas industry, as we recently witnessed the load-out of the biggest suction pile (15.5 metres width) fabricated at the Belmet 7 yard, located in the port, to the Jubilee Field”.
The port, he said, has leased 10,000sqm of land to Springfield (sub-contractor for Aker Energy) for the construction of a fabrication and testing yard to support Aker energy’s oil and gas campaign in Ghana.
He added that the joint venture between the Ghana Ports and Harbour Authority (GPHA) and Ibistek, under a concession agreement signed between the two in 2017 to develop multipurpose port terminal facilities within Takoradi Port for handling containerized cargo and other multi-cargo commodities and related terminal services, will in January 2019 commence physical construction.
This, he said, follows the signing of a project management contract with Royal Haskoning DHV of the Netherlands for the provision of technical advice and construction supervision in relation to construction of the one million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) multi-purpose container terminal.
“With signing the agreement, I am reliably informed that Ibistek has initiated negotiations with world-acclaimed maritime infrastructure development group Jan de Nul (JDN) toward signing the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract,” he said.
“We are doing our best to bring all the oil and gas companies on board; this will ensure a lot of employment opportunities and serve as a one stop shop,” he added.
He revealed that: “The major challenge we encountered as a Port in 2018 was the continuous breakdown of mobile harbour cranes.
“This, I must say, impacted negatively on port operations, particularly container vessel turnaround time. The good news is that the situation is almost resolved, and in the coming year the Liebherr Crane christened ‘George Barnes’ will swing into full action,” he said.
“The construction of an oil hub remains a major priority for the Board and Management of GPHA. In view of this, the search for a partner for development of the hub is at an advance stage and very soon we all will hear very good news in this direction,” Captain Afedzi said.
He said, according to GNPC, 6 blocks have been earmarked for oil/gas development in the Western basin of Ghana.
“The port will continue to be the main strategic support base of the industry going forward, and will fully support the current onshore explorations of oil/gas in the Voltaian basin. The Voltaian basin covers 40% of Ghana’s land mass with 103,600sqm, and covers parts of Northern, Volta, Eastern, Brong-Ahafo and Ashanti Regions of Ghana,” he added.
He said the port will continue to be world-class; the dominant oil and gas hub of West Africa.