Position transport sector to boost trade and Economic growth – Minister

Apollo (W/R)- Mr. Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, the Minister of Transport has charged all Chief Executives and officials within the sector to be proactive in the execution of their duties as the Ministry works to position the sector to boost trade and economic growth.

“We all have to respond to the dynamics of the sector to enable us to play our expected roles…whiles supporting the African Continental Free Trade programme”.

Mr. Asiamah said this at the 2019 mid-year review conference to assess the performance of the Ministry’s benchmarks for progress, where they had fallen short and make proposals for improvement.

The theme for the mid-year review conference is The Role of Transport in Boosting Trade, Economic Growth and National Development in the era of the African Continental Free Trade Area”.

The Minister mentioned that transport and logistic were undoubtedly the pivot on which trade flourished and noted the need for the country to have the necessary infrastructure, services and regulations for an efficient and low cost transportation system to stimulate growth and national development.

The Continental Free Trade Area Agreement is an agreement between African Union member states aimed at creating a single Continental market for goods and services with free movement of capital and persons.

The Minister said, “This single market require massive investment in physical infrastructure and trade facilitation.”

He noted that the National Vision required that the sector was positioned to enable the sector to play a catalytic role in stimulating socio-economic growth and development… Ghana’s trading corridors must become competitive to attract trade and investment “.

The Minister said the Sector had done well with the passage of the Road Safety Bill, the new container terminal, removal of stumps along the routes of the Volta lake, completion of terminals at Tudu, construction of five landing sites along the Volta Lake, ten coastal fish landing sites and improved service delivery at the DVLA.

However, increasing rates of causalities and fatalities, lack of suitable landing facilities for berthing of canoes along the Volta Lake, poor public transport devices and inadequate funding for the sector. Among others, remained key challenges confronting the sector.

“Let us also pinch ourselves as a reminder that there remains a lot to be done towards addressing the challenges facing the sector”, the Minister said.

The Minister said the provision of adequate transportation facilities for lake crossing was key on the agenda of the Ministry and hinted that consultation was underway to develop the lake for multi modal transportation system.

Mr. Asiamah urged heads of boards within the sector to focus on government’s priority projects, ensure that there was no labour unrest as the country approached another election year.

The Minister cautioned all heads of agencies and line managers to adhere to the provisions in the Public Financial Management Act, 2016 in the discharge of their duties.

Mr. Kobby Okyere Darko, the Western Regional Minister said avoiding post production losses for economic growth and the development of businesses in the agricultural sector, demanded on a reliable, accessible and comfortable means of transport.

He said it was strategic that the transport sector was resourced with infrastructure that opened up the country to the rest of Africa for development.

The Western Regional Minister said the Region would in the near future develop a sea transport system that would link the Region to the Greater Accra Region.

Source: Ghana News Agency