Kodjo Adams, GNA
Accra, Aug 15, GNA -
Government has constituted an inter-ministerial committee to meet the deadline
for the implementation of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) 2020
Sulphur Cap regulations, Mrs Mabel Sagoe, the Chief Director of Ministry of
Transport has said.
comprised of representatives from the Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA), the Ghana
Shippers’ Authority (GSA), the National Petroleum Commission, the Ghana Ports
and Harbour Authority, among others to ensure that adequate plans were put in
place to meet the deadline.
The global IMO
Sulphur Cap 2020 regulations specify that every vessel must adhere to strict
Sulphur emission limits with effect from January 1, 2020 by lowering the
Sulphur content from 3.5 per cent to 0.5 per cent or face consequences
including fines and delays to shipping schedules.
The regulations is
aimed at addressing the major environmental challenges like the air pollution
from maritime transportation.
Mrs Sagoe announced
this on Thursday at a sensitisation seminar for shippers and shipping service
providers on the impact of IMO 2020 Sulphur Cap Regulations on shipping cost in
Accra, jointly organised by the GSA and the GMA.
She said the global
system of shipping industry required that, Ghana aligned itself to the
implementation of shipping regulations and standards because the country was a
member of the IMO and a signatory to the Marpol convention.
The main elements
of pollution are nitrogen oxide and Sulphur oxide, which are mainly due to the
presence and burning of Sulphur compounds in the fuel and causes respiratory
symptoms and lung disease.
Mrs Sagoe stated
that limiting Sulphur oxide emissions from ships would improve air quality and
protect the environment, adding that the country needed to prepare adequately
to create the needed awareness and adopt policy strategy to adhere to the
“As a Ministry, we
recognised the need to ensure optimum port cost as a prerequisite for greater
competitiveness of Ghanaian shippers, calling on stakeholders in the sector to
support government efforts to ensure successful implementation of trade
facilitation measures at our ports”.
She said government
was committed to ensuring that the country’s international trade remained
competitive, paving way for the vision of the regional trade hub, stressing
that the start of the new Meridian Port Services terminal three and the ongoing
port expansion projects at the Takoradi port were all expected to boost trade.
According to her,
the ongoing reforms including the paperless cargo clearance system were being
evaluated to ensure greater efficiency with the aim of seeing an overall
improvement in the cost of doing business in the ports.
Bismarck, the Chief Executive Officer, GSA said the African Maritime Transport
Charter 2020 of which Ghana had subscribed to, sheds light on the remits of
maritime administrations relating to safety, security and pollution of the
maritime environment, while the shippers organisations dealt with freight
rates, port charges, among others.
She stated that the
GMA would focus on providing guidelines for the compliance and monitoring of
the IMO 2020 Sulphur Cap regulations while the GSA focused on the impact of
compliance by shipping lines on their charges.
She said Sulphur in
gasoline impaired the effectiveness of emission control systems and contributed
to air pollution, adding that reducing its content enabled advanced emission
controls and reduced the pollutions.
Mr Daniel Appianin,
the Deputy Director General in charge of Operations and Technical, GMA, said
statistics revealed that there were more than 100,000 transport ships at sea
transporting every kind of cargo.
However, in 2016,
it was reported that ships carried more than 10 billion tons of trade for the
first time globally.
superintends over the Maritime Pollution Act (ACT 932), which provides for the
prevention, regulation and control of maritime pollution within the territorial
waters of the country and other maritime zones.
He called on ship
owners and ship operators to be united in their determination to ensure that
international shipping remained the most the most environmentally sound mode of
called for intensive sensitisation forum across the country and ensure that any
increases in shipping cost as a result of compliance to the regulations was
addressed amicably without any infractions.