African Ports  to embrace digitisation

African Ports to embrace digitisation

A recent study on African ports' digitalisation efforts has revealed that while progress is being made, there are still challenges to overcome. 


The study, conducted by the Africa Transport Policy Program (SSATP), reviewed the digitalisation status and policy environment of 31 countries and 39 ports across Africa. 

The study revealed that African ports have an average digital maturity score of 2.76, with a wide range of maturity levels observed among different ports. 

While some ports like the Port of Tema scored high in digital maturity, others lagged behind due to various factors such as the lack of investment in digital tools. Interestingly, the study found that the correlation between digital maturity and port performance is not always straightforward. 

Some ports with high digital maturity levels exhibited low productivity, indicating that factors beyond digitalisation, such as equipment condition and labour environment, also play a significant role in port performance.

Trade facilitation policies were identified as key drivers for supply chain and port digitalisation, highlighting the importance of government initiatives in promoting digital transformation within the ports. 

However, the study also noted a lack of policy direction and regulations to further invest in digitalisation, signalling a barrier to improving digitalisation levels within African ports.

Single window 

Despite these challenges, the study found that a significant percentage of ports in Africa already have or are actively implementing a maritime single window (MSW), showcasing progress in digitalisation efforts.

According to the study, 26 per cent of ports have concrete plans to implement a maritime single window (MSW) within the next three years, indicating a positive trend towards digital transformation. 

However, the remaining 31 per cent either have no plans or lack interest in implementing an MSW, highlighting the need for targeted support and awareness-raising efforts.


Drawing from common observations across Pan-African ports and maritime supply chains, a set of recommendations has been proposed to help African ports achieve higher levels of digitalisation. 

These recommendations include guiding governmental bodies to enhance trade facilitation efforts through sound policies and digital platforms, creating forums for collaboration on digital initiatives, showcasing global examples for adaptation, facilitating leapfrogging ICT infrastructure deployment, and providing training and tools for improved cybersecurity adoption.

The study indicated that African countries and ports will benefit significantly from the adoption of advanced digital solutions aimed at streamlining cargo flow and enhancing transparency within their ports.

Connect With Us : 0242202447 | 0551484843 | 0266361755 | 059 199 7513 |

Like what you see?

Hit the buttons below to follow us, you won't regret it...