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Dredging Works At Takoradi Harbour Begin   
 
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26-Feb-2020  
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The Zheng CSD Dredger undertaking dredging works at site
 
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Dredging works in the basin of the Takoradi Harbour meant to deepen it and allow for larger vessels to dock have begun.

The works will create water of about 18.5 metres deep (chart datum) in the port basin along the quay wall of 600 metres in length.

A quay wall is a retaining structure built parallel to the bank of the dock for use as a landing place to load and unload goods.

The project, which is to upgrade and expand the Takoradi Port and estimated to cost $500 million, is about 45 per cent constructed. The first phase of the project is expected to be completed in November next year.

When the Daily Graphic visited the harbour last Monday, workers were seen using special machines to remove both soft and hard materials from the bottom of the sea.

A self-propelled dredger dug up materials from the bottom of the port basin and were sucked up through dredge pumps and discharged from a floating pipeline to pipes on shore and consequently to an area where the sludge were deposited.

The contractors working on the project, that is, Atlantic Terminal Services and Jan De Nul, expressed the hope of completing the phase involving dredge works in April this year.

A local firm, Ibistek Limited, is in charge of the port expansion project under a 25-year concession agreement with the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA). Funding for the project is from the African Finance Group and the Ghana Infrastructure Fund (GiFF).

Ibistek

Speaking to journalists during a tour of the project site last Monday, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Ibistek, Dr Felix Nana Sackey, said the concession agreement allowed the company to look for funding to construct and operate the dock and its associated terminals across 62 hectares.

“This new capacity would be 10 times the current capacity of the Takoradi Port, making it a significant development,” he said.

Dr Sackey put the cost of phase one of the project at about $210 million and that works were expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2021.

He said the Atlantic terminal was expected to have a cargo holding capacity of one million twenty-footer equivalent units (TEUs), an increase from the average container traffic of about 55,000 TEUs a year and “this is a major development in the history of the Takoradi Port.”

“Issues of funding has been the biggest challenge for this project but it’s not limited to only this particular project.

It’s a general issue when it comes to port investment in West Africa, especially when you are talking about a multi-million project being undertaken by an indigenous company with no track record in the port development and operations sector,” Dr Sackey said.

The Ibistek CEO said, however, that Ibistek had a team of experts who dealt in international financing and would turn things around.

“It is a classic example of trying our own to see if they can deliver. But if we can do it for people externally, why can’t we do it for ourselves? I will entreat the system to actually test the philosophy that local firms can equally undertake successful developments within the space of port development,” Dr Sackey said.

Technology

For his part, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Ibistek, Mr Kwame Gyan, said the company had the advantage of yesterday because they had seen technologies that were deployed at the Tema Port and other competing facilities in the subregion.

“We are not doing a port upgrade that will be secondary to Tema, but a port that will be comparable or even superior to existing facilities in the country and anywhere in the subregion, hence our decision to ensure that only state-of-the art information, communication and technology (ICT) equipment in container handling are deployed,” he said.

GPHA

The Director of the Takoradi Harbour, Capt Ebenezer Afadzi, expressed his satisfaction with the progress of work which, he said, was on schedule.

"This is a very important project for us because the Takoradi Port is deemed to be a port for bulk cargo only and with minimal container vessel concentration owing to our lack of capacity. But, I am, particularly, happy that this is about to change in a year’s time,” he said.
 
 
Source: Daily Graphic
 
 

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