President Akufo-Addo has cut-sod for the construction of a $137 million floating drydock facility for ship and rig repairs at the Takoradi Port, the biggest in West Africa.
The 13,500-ton lift capacity floating dry dock shipyard facility, capable of servicing ships of 200 metres is being developed by Prime Meridian Docks, a private Ghanaian company and is expected to be operational by the fourth quarter of 2024.
President Akufo-Addo who also commissioned the Ibistek-GPHA's completed Atlantic Services' Multi-Purpose Container Terminal and the Dry Bulk Terminal which will increase Takoradi Port's current cargo handling of 400 metric tons to 2,500 metric tons of cargo per hour, as well as cut-sod for the construction of a $98 million modern Oil and Gas terminal said the completed projects and the new ones to be constructed will transform the Takoradi port into a world-class port and boost regional and international trade.
“These interventions will enhance cargo handling capacity, maintenance and repair of ships and also meet the demands and rigorous of the oil and gas sector services sector within the Takoradi port enclave. I have no doubt that these projects will spear rapid economic growth and accelerate the development of our economy. I commend Prime Meridian Docks Group for this bold step as we seek to improve access to vessel repair services within the Western part of the country and across the West African Sub-region,“ he said.
Nana Akufo-Addo also praised Ibistek's Atlantic Terminal Services, AFC, Equity and GPHA for their successful completion of the $147 million Multi-Purpose Container Terminal at the Takoradi Port to take care of export and import containers and conventional cargoes which operationalization is expected in February 2023.
The Chief Executive Officer of Prime Meridian Docks, Stanley Raja Korshi Ahorlu, a Ghanaian company that is developing the floating dry dock facility for ship and rig repairs at the Takoradi Port gave the specifics of the project upon completion.
“The Project comprises civil works and the procurement of a floating dry dock. The civil works involve the dredging of a pocket for the floating dock and the turning basin to -14 m char-datum and -11 m Char-datum respectively, the construction of a jetty of 200 meters, a fitting-out quay facility that provides up to 400 metres of berthing space, and the development of some 18,000 square meters of lay-down area and land-based workshop facility. Upon completion, it will have a 13,500-ton lift capacity floating dry dock and be capable of servicing ships of 200 metres-LOA”, he said.
While justifying the essence of the floating Drydock project in collaboration with GPHA, Mr. Ahorlu said it will create over 200 local jobs.
“The whole idea is to create an infrastructure that currently does exist on the West African Coast and maintain and repair vessels that are working within the region. At every point in time, you have about 7,000 vessels that are clustered at one point that will be needing repair and maintenance services. Presently most of these are going outside of the region simply because they are not obtaining price competitiveness and quality standards in places in Las Palmas and in South Africa. So our solution to the market is to create something proximate to where these vessels are working, and we are doing this in collaboration with GPHA which we are grateful for. We expect it to take on revenue of about $40 million annually and we expect the creation of 200 permanent and 300 casual jobs“, he added.
Also speaking at the commissioning and sod-cutting event, the Director of General of GPHA, Michael Luguji said the projects form part of the GPHA's expansion master plan started in 2012 to turn the port into an international port which makes the Takoradi port competitive.
“We are happy to be in a highly competitive environment where we have the latest state-of-the-art facilities. Currently, we have oil in Ghana but across the sub-region, we don't have state-of-the-art modern ship repair and wreckage repair facilities, so this Prime Meridian Dock facility is going to help the Port of Takoradi to be most attractive in terms of ship repairs and wreck repairs. The oil and gas services terminal is within GPHA's vision to position Takoradi Port as the oil and gas services hub, and indeed that facility that will be completed in the next 18 months will appropriately position this port in this regard. We want to specifically acknowledge our private sector partners, thus IBisTek, AFC, Equity, Prime Meridian Docks and the various banks that supported us to raise funds to develop these projects. They are KBC of Belgium, GCB, ECOBank and GT bank“.
On his part, the Minister of Transport, Kweku Ofori Asiamah said the projects are strategic for the transport industry.