The Meridian Port Services Limited (MPS) has commenced the construction of a Harbour Craft Jetty alongside preparations for operationalisation of the yard behind its 4th new berth at the Port of Tema.
The Chief Executive Officer of MPS, Mohamed Samara, emphasised the need for the developments being undertaken which are to increase future capacity.
According to him, MPS through its shareholders has since 2017 invested over US$1.2billion in the areas of infrastructure, technology, human resource development and other areas – resulting in increased cargo volumes and positioning the port as the most-preferred in the West African sub-region.
Mr. Samara told the B&FT that: “We are excited to note that the Ministry of Trade has launched a National Policy Framework Plan for the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and announced an action plan to boost Ghana’s trading prospects.
“As government focuses on its policy framework, MPS’s continued investments in the Port of Tema will complement government’s efforts to position Tema Port to become more competitive in the sub-region. Again, MPS anticipates an increase in volumes (both gateway and transhipment); and as such we have committed to increasing the yard storage and handling capacity to complement gearing up the 4th New berth with the latest gantry cranes.
“Moreover, the jetty’s development to provide a docking place for harbour craft at Terminal 3 will allow the Pilots and Tugboats to respond in record time upon completion of the vessel operations. It is expected that the reduction in response time will provide a better turnaround time for vessels at berthing and departure, and enhance security at Terminal 3.”
MPS on track with investment in Tema Port
Tema Port has been significantly transformed by the Tema Port Expansion Project – a Build, Operate and Transfer (BoT) project between the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority and Meridian Port Services Ltd. With completion and operationalisation of the 1st phase and commencement of the 2nd phase of the project, there has been a significant increase in the Tema Port’s capacity – with Four (4) New Berths at Terminal 3 offering the opportunity for vessels with a draft of up to 16 metres berthing at Terminal 3.
The 24-hour services rendered at Terminal 3 – backed by the well-organised Truck Appointment System (TAS), have significantly enhanced the ease of doing business in Terminal 3 and further boosted the efficiency and image of Tema Port.
Security of transactions at Terminal 3 has been reinforced by the introduction of E-Invoicing, E-Payments, Access Control Systems, Licence Plate Recognition Systems, CCTV Cameras, X-Ray Scanners for both Imports and Exports, and Radio Frequency Identification Systems.
Indeed, many were those who doubted that the introduction of these systems would work in Ghana. But they have been pleasantly surprised as the stakeholders of Truckers, Customs Officials, Clearing and Forwarding Agents, and Immigration Officers among many others have all been successfully onboarded onto these systems and are using same with ease. The integration of all these systems with the ICUMS system to enhance the Paperless Port Processes has been very successful at Terminal 3.
MPS has also handed back to GPHA the 2 berths of over 11 metres draft and a sizable yard capacity stretching over 247,000 m2 of fully paved ground at Terminal 2. This has given GPHA the opportunity to transform Terminal 2 into a multi-purpose Terminal to handle deeper-drafted vessels with many different kinds of cargo; including general cargo vessels, bagged cargo, RoRo, dry bulk and liquid bulk etc.
Mr. Samara said Tema Port is undoubtedly recognised as one of the burgeoning hubs within the West African sub-region.
In its quest to secure Tema Port as the Hub of West Africa, Meridian Port Services Ltd. (MPS) continues to invest into the development of Tema Port with additional facilities and infrastructure.
Transhipment Trade Highlights
Following a resumption in the transhipment trade with Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) between the Far East and South America, MPS has handled a total of 16,038 TEUs discharged from 8 different vessels from the Far East and loaded on 3 different vessels to Brazil.
With the combined strength of the various departments, MPS has from 25th June 2022 to 31st July 2022 been continuously improving productivity levels – as evidenced by the transhipment vessel with a productivity in the range of 125 Moves Per Hour.
The month of July also saw the unique occurrence of having 3 MSC vessels that were handled simultaneously on all three berths.