US$450 million Debre Inland Port takes off; first phase operational by 2024

Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia (in white) being briefed about the details of the project Vice President, Dr.

Mahamudu Bawumia (in white) being briefed about the details of the project

Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has cut sod for the development of the US£450 million Debre inland marine port and industrial park to enhance economic activities in Northern Ghana. The multimodal transport corridor known as the Trans-Volta logistics corridor project, at a cost of US£200million, being undertaken by LMI Holdings, is to develop an alternative means to transport containers and bulk cargo from the port of Tema via the Volta Lake to the Northern Region. An extension of the project will be the development of a 1,000-acre industrial park at Yapei for the development of Agro-processing to add value to agricultural products at an additional cost of US£250million.

The project will also involve the construction of two ports at Akwamu-Korankye in the Eastern Region to enable imported goods to the northern part of Ghana and other landlocked countries such as Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger, among others, to be transported on the Volta Lake. When completed, the project is expected to improve efficiency, deliver significant cost savings to traders and transporters, reduce pressure on our roads due to the proliferation of heavy-duty vehicles, and increase the patronage of the Tema Port. The first phase of the project will be operational within the first half of the year 2024 and the entire project is expected to be fully operational by the year 2025.

Speaking at the ceremony, Vice President Bawumia said the heavy reliance on roads for the transport of goods from the Tema Port to Ghana's landlocked neighbours has had a punishing effect on roads, leading to shorter lifespans and safety concerns. He said the availability of subsidised service and infrastructure such as roads, electricity, energy, water supply, and telecommunication services are competitive standpoint that attract international and foreign investors. "The investment in the inland ports will therefore offer superior logistics, the opportunity of large warehouses, proximity to rail and highways, ample truck parking, less traffic congestion, and economic incentives," he said.

He emphasised that industrial parks, such as the one at Debre, signals business readiness in any given context, serving production and manufacturing needs for mutually beneficial businesses and industries. "It is estimated that each barge trip from the inland port will take over 300 trucks off our roads. This monumental intervention will reap major savings on road maintenance.

It will reduce the incidences of fatal road accidents," he added.

The Chief Executive Officer of LMI, Kojo Aduhene, said the completion of the port is expected to create 1,000 to 1,200 direct jobs, and over 10,000 indirect jobs in the area.