Chinese engineering firm takes charge of US$ 1.5 billion port expansion project in Ghana

China Harbor Engineering Company (CHEC) has commenced expansion work on Ghana’s eastern port of Tema, about 40 km east of the capital after a sod-turning ceremony late Wednesday.

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President John Dramani Mahama, of Ghana who performed the commissioning ceremony, was hopeful the project would position the Tema port as one of the leading ports in turn-around time and capacity in Africa.

“Government’s vision has been to position the ports of Ghana as the trade and investment gateway to the West African sub-region. I have never hidden my vision for making Ghana the hub for maritime and aviation transport in West Africa,” Mahama stated.

Mahama said the major corporate strategic direction for the Ghana Ports and Harbors Authority (GPHA) had been to build strategic partnerships with the private sector to enhance efficiency in service delivery.

He said the overall economic impact would translate into approximately 400,000 new jobs along the whole maritime transport chain.

The project is being financed by Meridian Port Services (MPS) and its partners with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) as the lead arranger.

The project represents IFC’s largest port investment project and the biggest infrastructure mobilization project to date in sub-Sahara Africa.

The Tema port was opened in 1962 under Ghana’s first President, Kwame Nkrumah, who sought to make Ghana the maritime trade hub of West Africa.

Mohammed Samara, Chief Executive Officer of MPS, expressed confidence in the ability of CHEC to deliver a world class project.

The expanded port will have a 1.4 km quay with four deep berths, equipped with sophisticated container handling gantry cranes and Terminal Operating Systems. Its capacity to accommodate cargo ships will be four times greater than its current capacity. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh

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