The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Thursday, 20th August 2020, cut the sod for the commencement of construction of the Elmina Fishing Port and Landing site Project.
According to President Akufo-Addo, when the Elmina Fishing Port Project is completed, it will provide a big boost for the fishing industry in Elmina, especially as the fishing industry is an important sector of the country’s economy.
With about sixty percent (60%) of the nation’s annual protein derived from fishing, and with fishing employing about 20% of the nation’s work force, the President explained that this is one of the reasons why the government made a decision to continually improve the infrastructure and conditions of the fishing industry to help improve the nation’s catch, cut down post-harvest losses and reduce fish imports in the medium to long term.
The President explained that the Elmina Fishing Port Rehabilitation Project was originally set to be financed by the CDB Loan from China, but the Government has secured separate funding from Belgium for the construction of the new fishing Port.
“In all, the Project will, first, see to upgrading existing facilities such as the administration building, the slipways, workshop, and the maintenance dredging of the existing Port. Secondly, the Project will also include the construction of a new fishing harbour, with a main breakwater and a quay wall to enable larger fishing vessels to safely moor and offload, a dedicated access road to the Port, and a warehouse for storage,” The President revealed.
The President added that the project will contain other works comprising the construction of an additional administrative building; a shed for the fish market; a shed for fishing net mending; two (2) Cold Stores/ Ice factories; a new slipway for bigger vessels with a boat refurbishment area; a toilet block; and a day care centre. The Project will also provide beach and coastal protection works, as well as restoration of the area in front of the Elmina Castle, to enhance tourism.
The President assured the gathering that Government will continue to do more in terms of export of processed fish and fish-related products to rake extra revenue for the country, and will make deliberate efforts to make value-addition a priority, through policy interventions for companies.
“I urge the Ministries of Transport, Fisheries and Works and Housing, the contractors and consultants to work closely together to execute this project diligently, and ensure it is completed on time and on budget,” He admonished.
President Akufo-Addo also appealed to the traditional authorities to help ensure prudent maintenance culture is adopted by management in the use of the fishing port once completed.
“All of us must appreciate that the deterioration of infrastructure and other assets of State are an enormous drain on national resources, and this port should not suffer the fates of other facilities with a poor maintenance culture.”
The Minister of Transport, whose Ministry is supervising the construction of the fishing Ports and Landing sites expressed optimism that the project will improve the lots of the fishing industry, the people of central region and Ghana as a whole.
“If you begin from Axim, Dixcove, Moree, Mumford, Winneba, Senya, Fete, Teshie, you would identify the commitments the President is making in the fishing industry and port infrastructure development for these communities,” Hon. Kweku Ofori Asiamah acclaimed.