Parliament has approved a ?200 million loan facility for the expansion of the Takoradi Harbour.

Following the approval of the loan from the consortium of banks led by the KBC Bank of Belgium, the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) has signed an agreement with the Jan De Nul Group, a Belgian company with expertise in the construction and maintenance of maritime infrastructure, for the expansion works.

The Director-General of the GPHA, Mr Richard Anamoo, initialed for his organisation, while Mr Filip Morobe, Area Manager of Jan De Nul, signed for his group.

The project, which involved the construction of the breakwater extension, bulk ore jetty and dredging of the port, is expected to be completed in 36 months.

He expressed optimism that the dredging, reclamation and other marine engineering works to be undertaken, would open up the port and make it the preferred facility within West and Central Africa?.

He added that while the expansion was necessary to decongest the port for business beyond Africa, it would also create inconveniences for the people in its catchment area.

Mr Anamoo, therefore, appealed to the chiefs and people of Sekondi-Takoradi and its environs to cooperate with the authority in its quest to ensure sustainable development of the community and Ghana as a whole.

He further announced that the GPHA had an agreement with the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) and other stakeholders for them to extend their work schedules at the Tema Harbour to include Sundays to reduce the time needed for the decongestion of the two ports.

Mr Anamoo, who was worried that cargo owners and agents used the port as a storage facility, cautioned that their licences may be withdrawn if they failed to take advantage of the new programme put in place to aid the speedy decongestion of the port.

Mr Morobe, for his part, envisaged that the completion of the project would address many infrastructural deficiencies in the facility. He also promised that his group would ensure that the project was completed on schedule.

Source: Daily Graphic

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