Ghana Shippers’ Authority champions ‘demurrage-free port’
• Participants in the event

Ghana Shippers’ Authority champions ‘demurrage-free port’

The Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) has reaffirmed its commitment to champion a 'demurrage-free port' in the interest of shippers and the national economy.


Consequently,  the authority has engaged top shippers in the Southern Zone to discuss costs and conditions at seaports, airports, and land borders. 

Speaking at a breakfast meeting with the Southern Zonal Shipper Committee in Accra, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GSA, Kwesi Baffour Sarpong, highlighted GSA's five-decade legacy of championing shippers' interests in Ghana through innovative and tailored shipping solutions. 

He said despite significant achievements, there was the need for further improvements to reduce costly port delays that undermine Ghanaian businesses' competitiveness.

He outlined GSA’s strategic repositioning and realignment, including classifying shippers into Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze categories based on annual shipment values to address unique challenges promptly. 

“Additionally, zonal shipper and stakeholder committees have been established to tackle specific regional challenges, with Ghana divided into five operational areas: Northern, Middle, Eastern, Western, and Southern zones,” Mr Sarpong stated.

Driving economic growth 

Highlighting the critical role of shippers in Ghana's socio-economic development, the CEO shared data from the first quarter of 2024, showing a total international trade value of GH¢107 billion, including GH¢59.5 billion in exports and GH¢48.1 billion in imports. 

He noted that in 2022, importers paid $24 million in demurrage, a cost contrary to Ghana's economic development agenda. 


During the meeting, stakeholders raised concerns about prolonged port delays, high demurrage charges, inefficient cargo handling, and bureaucratic bottlenecks. 

They expressed frustration over the impact of these challenges on their businesses, citing increased operational costs and reduced competitiveness in the global market.


In response, Mr Sarpong acknowledged these concerns and outlined GSA's strategic initiatives to address them. 

He emphasized the importance of collaborative efforts between the Authority and the stakeholders to create a more efficient and cost-effective shipping environment.

The CEO noted that the GSA is adopting a pre-emptive approach to address challenges in the shipping value chain, including prior notification of anticipated shipment issues to shippers.

He appealed to importers, exporters, and customs house agents to provide accurate contact details to facilitate this service.

For her part, the Head of Operations at the GSA, Monica Josiah, said “under the CEO’s leadership, the GSA has restructured importers and exporters into four categories: Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze, and mapped the country into operational zones for improved service.”

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