The Ghana Shippers Authority (GSA) is committed to the development of the Boankra Integrated Logistics Terminal (BILT) to promote export from the northern sector and facilitate transit trade to reinvigorate business activities in Northern Ghana.
The move is being pursued strategically to enhance transit trade with neighbouring landlock countries and also, create some more job opportunities in the north. The project forms part of activities of the Ghana Shippers Authority aimed at making the nation’s transit corridors more attractive and competitive to the in the sub-region.
This came to light during a stakeholder meeting on transit trade for the Northern Command of the Ghana Police Service (GPS) in Tamale, the northern region’s capital.
The forum, organized by GSA, was aimed at deliberating on issues impeding economic activities in the country at the various corridors and devise strategies to curb them, as well as sensitize security service personnel on the benefits of transit trade to the country’s economic growth.
The forum also forms part of the mandate of the GSA to engage the security and other stakeholders from time to time and solicit their inputs on matters that affected international and national trade and transit of cargoes to neighbouring countries. It was revealed that several security barriers along the country’s transit corridors continue to be a challenge to Ghana’s transit trade in the West African Sub-region.
Speaking at the forum, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP) Moses Atibilla who is the Deputy Northern Regional Police Commander, commended the GSA for the continuous support and collaboration with the security to enhance transit trade on the various corridors across the country.
He said Police in the region were committed to removing trade barriers along Ghana’s transit corridors to enhance economic activities in the country, but the continuous robbery and the protection of citizens welfare has made the security to maintain and erect some new barriers.
Chief Executive Officer for GSA Benonita Bismarck, represented by the Head of Freight and Logistics Fred Asiedu-Dartey said: “Feedback from the Authority’s e-platform system for monitoring Non-Tariff Trade Barriers along Ghana’s major corridors and quarterly fact-finding trips have revealed several road governance challenges involving transit truck drivers and key state actors such as the Police MTTD, Customs, Ghana Highway Authority, and others.”
“The outcome of the latest fact-finding trip undertaken from May 24 to 28, 2021 on the Tema-Hamile corridor recorded 55 Police and MTTD stops with 40 being permanent barriers and 15 temporary barriers, two Forestry Commission posts, nine Customs checkpoints, and three Immigration checkpoints as well as four Axle Load stations located at Tema motorway, Akom, Doboro, and Sawla,” she said.
He added that these barriers resulted in undue stops by drivers and alleged monetary extortion by some security officers among other illegal acts.
According to him, substantial efforts have been made to facilitate transit trade and to make Ghana the most attractive in the sub-region; however, there were fundamental issues affecting the Transit Trade that called for much attention.
The Ashanti and Northern Regional manager for GSA, Isaac Tersiah Ackwerh, said the engagement was part of activities initiated by the Authority to help smoothen all rough edges in transit trade.
Besides the role played by the northern sector of the country as a major exporter of Ghana’s non-traditional product, it also plays a pivotal role in availing its human resource and road infrastructure to facilitate the transportation of transit goods from Ghana’s seaports to landlocked countries, particularly Burkina Faso he said.