The Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) anticipates a possible drop between 20 to 25 per cent of cargo berths at the port this year, especially cargoes that come into the country from the Russia-Ukraine regions.
“Data gather from shippers indicates that due to the effect of the Russia-Ukraine war, cargo traffic into the country would dip as about 25 per cent of wheat and fertilizer import to the country were from Ukraine and Russia,” Mr Michael Luguje, GPHA Director-General stated.
Mr Luguje stated during the seventh meeting of the Port Management Association of West and Central Africa (PMAWCA) Harbour Masters, and Port Facility Security Officers (PFSOS) in Tema.
The three-day meeting brought together port management, harbour masters and port security officers from Ghana, Nigeria, Liberia, and Senegal among others in West and Central Africa to share ideas, identify common port challenges and adopt holistic measures to mitigate them.
Mr Luguje, who is also the President of PMAWCA, called on importers to look for alternative places to import from, acknowledging, however, that sourcing from other places comes with additional costs, which would obviously lead to a reduction in quantities to import.
He emphasised the need for port operators also to be resilient in their planning, by factoring in the risk of the extreme opposite of the current situation.
“That extreme one could be you wake up one morning, and nothing is moving, how do you solve it, so now every budget we formulate we are assuming that we could wake up one day and have to deal with half of that budget how are we going to survive with the other half,” he said.
The GPHA Director-General also charge port operators to develop a strategic plan and adopt measures in terms of cost planning, prudent management of revenue, and all the other remote resources including technology usage to ensure efficient operation.
Mr Luguje also called for prudent efforts to minimize the use of fossil fuels and power and encourage port operators to consider investment in wind power, as well as develop an interest in electronic vehicles among others.