The Transport Ministry has ordered the immediate suspension of the introduction of the Terminal Handling Charges by the Ship Owners’ and Agents Association of Ghana until further notice.

The ministry, in the interim, has tasked the Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA) to constitute a committee to investigate the issue.

The decision was taken after the ministry met with the Ship Owners and Agents Association of Ghana to settle issues relating to the proposed Terminal Handling charges proposed by the ship owners association.

Business Associations had opposed the charge and called on government to reject the Terminal Handling Charges yet to be implemented by shipping companies.

The business associations argued it will be unfair to add unto their numerous tax charges as their businesses are already on the verge of collapse.

Speaking to Citi Business News on the latest development, the Executive Secretary of the Importers and Exporters Association of Ghana, Samson Asaaki Awingobit, lauded the transport minister for the move,

“We as stakeholders are happy with the minister for the timely intervention because I think that shipping lines did not have any basis to introduce the terminal handling charges,” he asserted.

Mr. Awingobit further expressed hope that the policy is abolished completely by government.

“The shipping lines are already charging evacuation fee meanwhile they are not the people evacuating. They don't owe any carriage at the port; it is rather the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) and their allied companies that are working at the port that carry out evacuation of containers and other terminal operators.”

By: Jessica Ayorkor Aryee/