Revenue through the Tema Port increased from 7.8 million dollars in 1998 to 13.8 million dollars last year. Transit Traffic also increased from 108,963 metric tonnes in the year 1999 to 518,857 metric tones this year.
Mr Kofi Mbiah, Chief Executive of the Ghana Shippers' Council (GSC), gave these statistics at the Second Continuing Professional Development Forum, organised by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) for its members in Tema last Thursday.
Organised under the theme: "Implications of the Transit Trade on the National Economy" the forum was designed to give continuous professional education and development to members of the Institute and the transport industry.
Mr Mbiah, whose topic was: "Trade Facilitation, Transit Traffic and the Legal Framework Regulating Transit Trade in the West African Sub Region", stated that, trade was very crucial to facilitate the development of every nation. He, therefore, stressed the need for nations worldwide, to make efforts to remove transit trade bottlenecks in order to prevent the free movement of goods and services.
The Chief Executive of the GSC mentioned increased incidence of accidents on the roads, loss of revenue to governments through diversions, small arms proliferation and undue stretching of customs resources, as some of the negative impacts of transit trade.
Mr Mbiah was, however, quick to add that these negative impacts "are not inherent in the use of Ghana's corridors for transit trade, adding that, what was needed to be addressed, were infrastructure, logistics, administrative as well as legal issues. On the legal framework regulating Transit Trade, he suggested that a comprehensive domestic legislation be instituted to serve as a driving force for trade facilitation for Transit Trade.
Mr Cletus Kuzagbe, President of the Tema branch of CILT, indicated that through lectures, conferences, seminars and workshops, the governing council of CILT, was building bridges and linkages with other government departments, professional bodies as well as educational institutions. The aim, Mr Kuzagbe said, was to promote and encourage the advancement of professionalism and good practice in the field of transport and logistics operations, management, dissemination and the exchange of ideas.
He urged members to unite and work together in the interest of the Institute and the nation, adding, "there is so much for us all to do to make our logistics and transport systems more efficient and cheaper to support our economy and our people."
Mr Albert Ofori, Chairman of the Tema branch of CILT noted that, "As transport professionals, it is imperative to commit ourselves to the challenging assignment of creating value to the body of knowledge in achieving excellence."