Govt considering development of Special Economic Zone at Tema port to drive trade

The Ministry of Trade and Industry is considering the development of a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) within the Tema port enclave to drive investments and trade.

SEZ is an industrial zone created within a specific geographical location to attract foreign investment and spark technological advancement.

Businesses operating at SEZs benefit from additional economic advantages including tax incentives and the opportunity to pay lower tariffs.

SEZs also help to increase export levels for the country and other countries that supply it with intermediate products.

Minister of Trade and Industry, K.T Hammond, explained that, SEZ within the port enclave was a viable initiative that would propel the government’s industrialisation agenda.

Speaking during a tour of Meridian Port Services (MPS) at Tema yesterday, he said, the government would provide the necessary policy direction and enabling environment to foster the creation of the SEZ within the port.

The tour, which also included the Cargo checkpoints at the Kotoka International Airport and Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) offices at Tema port, forms part of the Minister’s working visits to familiarise himself with the operations of organisationsand institutions in the trade facilitation space.

He said, boosting international trade was an integral part of government’s development agenda saying that all the necessary support required for enhancing Ghana’s trade receipts would be provided by government.

“The SEZ is a fantastic idea and the Ministry will urgently consider it. We have been told that it will feed into increasing the volumes of export and import, thereby enhancing the operations of the port,” Mr Hammond added.

He said, the SEZ was an economically prudent move and ensures the centralisation of businesses and attracts foreign direct investments.

Mr Hammond advised the port operators and cargo entry and exits points at the Kotoka International Airport to work towards removing all impediments in their processing that could frustrate businesses.

In an earlier interaction with managers of Nick TC Scan Limited, the company responsible for the scanning of goods for both import and export, the Minister commended them for the investments in technology which had enhanced the speeding rate of its processes.

He further urged for continuous investments and regular training of security officials who were operating the technology to increase productivity.

On his part, Joojo Morrison, General Manager, Nick TC- Scan Ltd, said, the company had acquired new scanning equipment with a high level of detection technology for the various cargo entry points including Hamile and Paga in the Upper West and East regions.

“We have made significant investments in our scanning systems. By end of May, we expect the arrival of a new scanner with modern technology for the KIA Cargo checkpoint and two others which will be in the country by September this year.

This equipment is fixed with a robust system that is able to detect all container contents,” he added.

Mohammed Samara, Chief Executive Officer of Meridian Port Services, said the company was working to make Ghana a shipping hub.

Already, he said, about six shipping lines have made Ghana their hub for transshipment, saying that the creation of economic zone would drive trade volumes and investments.


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