The Minister for Transport, Mr Mike Hammah and his Deputy, Mrs Dzifa Aku Attivor, yesterday toured the Ghana Shippers' Council (GSC) in Tema to acquaint themselves with the operations of the Council.
Speaking to management and staff of the Council, Mr Mike Hammah said GSC has a major role to play in ensuring that the Gate Way Project, aimed at making Ghana the hub of marine industry in the West Africa Sub-region, is achieved.
The Minister was of the view that the gate way project will play a critical role to create an enabling environment and that it will ensure that the ports are effective, efficient as well as ensuring disciplined work force.
Mr Hammah, observed that legal and administrative framework, peace and security are the bedrock of any serious business country, saying 'without these building blocks, nobody can come and establish in that country.'
He said Government is committed in ensuring that Ghana becomes a middle earning income by the year 2020, adding that it is important to consciously and aggressively put proper measures in place to attract direct foreign investors into the country so that the President's vision can be achieved.
According to him, there is the political will to move things in the right direction, saying Government attaches importance to the transport sector and will continue to improve and provide the necessary resources for safe, efficient and reliable transport sector in the country.
The Minister commended the Shippers' Council for introducing a system called 'Free Toll Line' that helps the shippers to make enquiries about their goods which free them from penalty.
He implored them to come out with more innovative ways that will enable the shippers to be satisfied with their work. He also urged them to work harder than they are doing so the target set by them can be achieved.
The Deputy Chief Executive of GSC, Mr Emmanuel Martey, said the GSC, which was established in 1974, has worked closely with both private and public organisations in the maritime industry in galvanizing the interest of Ghanaian shippers while promoting the provision of relevant logistics for the growth and development of shipping in Ghana.
Mr.Martey said the Council's work on the Bonkra inland port, when complete will be a one stop shop. He revealed that GSC was planning to construct a shipping centre in Tema where all stake holders will meet and deliberate on issues that can move the industry forward.
He said GSC, is committed in building a resilient authority through sustainability and growth. He added that the council will strengthen their mandate in order to protect and promote the interest of the shippers.