Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II is worried the Boankra Integrated Logistics Terminal (BILT) situated in the Ashanti Region may not see its full realization as an inland port.
He believes the construction of a railway line to the inland port is critical to see the terminal functioning to its full capacity when completed.
The Asantehene observed that the original concessionaire, Ashanti Ports Limited, has failed to generate adequate funds to complete the establishment of the Boankra inland port project.
“The Concessionaires on the Boankra Inland Port could not raise funds for the project, it is being financed by the government now. We may end up not getting the actual size of the port as envisioned in the initial design,” he said.
His submission follows an appeal by the Ashanti Regional Minister for the construction of a rail line from the harbors to the inland port.
Simon Osei Mensah believes the urban roads would be rid of the heavy trucks transporting goods from the harbor to the northern part of the country.
“Otumfuo, the projects we really need here in the Ashanti Region to foster development are the Airport, the Boankra Inland port and the construction of rail lines from Tema and Takoradi to the inland port. If we should complete the inland port and there is no rail lines to transport the goods to the port then the project would be ineffective. This would retrogress the region. Without it, the roads will deteriorate because of the heavy trucks that would be on the road,” he said.
The Ashanti Regional Minister made the proposal during the last general meeting of the Ashanti Regional House of Chiefs on Wednesday, December 14, 2022.
In his response to the proposal, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II suggested a partnership between the government, the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority and the Development Bank of Ghana to seek investors to finance the project.
The Asantehene says the failure of the concessionaire to generate funds for the terminal warrants additional financial support for the railway construction.
“We are suggesting the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) to secure a loan to bring this project to fruition. We can also fund the project without recourse to the Sovereign Fund; the newly created Development Bank, the Infrastructure Fund and the GPHA can team up by quantifying the number of cargo volumes expected at the port for the first 20 years upon completion, the revenue that will be generated, and leverage it with investors for funding instead of relying solely on the meagre revenues generated in the country,” he said.
The Boankra inland port, planned for completion by 2024, would serve a major transportation conduit of transit traffic to and from neighboring landlocked countries of Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger.
Currently, 70% of landfills of the Terminal have been completed.
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