A 20-man delegation of Nigerien economic operators has paid a business visit to the Takoradi Port in the Western Region to ascertain the operations of the facility.
Addressing the delegation, the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority Representatives to Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger, David Songotu, urged those involved in clearing cargoes from the harbour through the corridor to contribute to the development of business in Ghana and the landlocked countries.
He appealed to the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) and the Ghana Police Service to stop harassing drivers who clear cargoes from the ports to the landlocked countries, "because that thwarts the trade practices of the country."
Mr Songotu advised drivers to use the Ghana Shippers Authority toll free number to inform the authority about any officer who harassed them on the road, adding that "drivers should also stop giving them money."
He noted that Niger was a fast growing economic country that Ghana needed to do serious business with, and said "the people of Niger are very sincere when dealing with others."
Mr Songotu said the visit of the delegation to Ghana would open new avenues for the two countries to increase business activity, stressing that, " this is the time to extend the port of Takoradi to Niger and other landlocked countries for more and bigger business operations to take place."
The leader of the Nigerien delegation, Abba Kafougou Abdourahaman, explained that their visit was due to recommendation made about the operations of the Takoradi Port, and assured that his country was set to do serious business with the port.
He said Niger was doing business with Takoradi Port until the introduction of the axle load project, which compelled Nigerien businesses to change their route.
The Director of the Port of Takoradi, Captain Ebenezer Afedzi, in his welcome speech, said since the port was being expanded, there was the need to look for more people to come and do business with them.
He said the port, which could boost of 16 feet deep anchorage, would need more people in cargo handling to visit the port and do business because bigger ships could now enter the port and dock without any problem.
Mr. Afedzi urged all the stakeholders of the port to collaborate and show deep commitment, because the port was prepared to reduce rates in order to draw more businesses to the facility.