The ultra-modern Terminal Three being constructed by the Meridian Port Services (MPS) at Tema Port would become fully operational on June 28, this year, to provide efficient port services for importers and exporters across the West African coastline.

The fully-automated terminal estimated at the cost of $1.5 billion has the capacity to accommodate two million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) containers from the previous 820,000 TEUs.

It will operate twenty-four seven (24/7) customer service and would be one of the largest container terminals in Africa, capable to provide 16 different port services.

The managers of the facility have deployed modern technology and operating systems with efficient port accessibility and high berth space to reduce the turnaround time for shipping lines, reduce the cost of doing business between 40 and 70 per cent, increase government revenues and become a hub for shipping lines in Africa.

Mr Mohamed Samara, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of MPS, in a presentation on the new terminal and cargo flow processes during a stakeholders’ engagement in Tema on Monday, said the new terminal would be a game-changer for the shipping industry, increase cargo volumes and attract larger vessels.

The meeting organised by the MPS and Ghana Shippers’ Authority brought together importers, exporters and key shipping organisations, including the Ghana Chamber of Commerce, Importers and Exporters Association, Institute of Freight Forwarders, Association of Ghana Industries, Abbosey Okai Spare Parts Dealers Association, Joint Association of Port Drivers and Ghana Union of Traders Associations, and  Mali and Burkina Faso Shippers Councils.

Earlier, the participants undertook a familiarisation tour of the facility, to acquaint themselves with the operations of the new terminal.

Ms Benonita Bismarck, the CEO of the Ghana Shippers’ Authority, in her welcome address, underlined the need for continued education and sensitisation of shippers and other stakeholders of the industry for better understanding of the operational procedures at the new terminal.

She called for a strong collaboration between the supply and the demand chain management system of the shipping industry and assured of the Authority’s commitment to uphold international standard in setting tariffs for the shipping industry.

Ms Bismarck urged industry players to prepare towards complying with the International Maritime Organisation’s decision to enforce a 0.5 per cent global Sulphur Cap effective January 1, 2020.

She said the Authority had drawn up a comprehensive programme of engagements to enlighten shippers and other stakeholders on the expected impact of the Sulphur Cap enforcement on their operations.

Mrs Sandra Opoku, the Tema Port Director of the GPHA, on her part, assured of the GPHA’s Customer and Marketing departments’ readiness to support importers and exporters to navigate through the operational procedures and operating systems of the new terminal, in order to improve efficiency in clearing of goods and services.

Source: GNA