Mr. Tarik Belkhiter from the Embassy of Denmark in Algiers visited Ghana to learn about the maritime sector and gain from the extensive maritime knowledge embedded in Ghana as an important maritime hub in Sub-Saharan Africa.
“This could be the beginning of a long partnership between the maritime sector in Ghana and Algeria, where we can learn and help each other.” Mr. Tarik Belkhiter, from The Danish Embassy in Algiers, explains.
On Friday 31 July, he rounded up a five-day maritime training visit to Ghana with the main purpose of gaining more knowledge on the maritime industry and the public authorities surrounding the maritime industry. Tarik has been working at the Embassy in Algiers as a Trade Advisor since it reopened in September 2017. He is the newly appointed maritime trade advisor responsible for Algieria and Tunesia, both of which are moving towards more maritime trade. As the maritime industry in those two countries is somewhat lacking, he wanted to see how a well-run sector is set up.
The visit was organized by maritime counsellor Thomas Raahauge Norup from the Embassy of Denmark in Ghana assisted by Mr. Tarik Belkhiter’s counterpart Maritime Trade Advisor Mr. Emmanuel Antwi Akoto from the embassy in Accra.
Meeting with stakeholders
The Embassy of Denmark in Algiers’ main client is Maersk. For Mr. Belkhiter the visit was a great opportunity to talk to Maersk Line representatives in Ghana and hear how they see the business conditions and trends:
“When I go back to Algiers I am going to sit down with Maersk and tell them about my experiences from Ghana. Maersk wants to broaden their activities in Algieria and build a long-term strategy that can provide integrated solutions to their customers. I can see how they have managed to do that in Ghana, so we know it can be done in Africa,” Mr. Belkhiter says.
His visit also included meetings with Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA), Ghana Port & Harbour Authorities (GPHA) and Ghana Shipowners’ Authority (GSA) as well as a presentation and a tour of the new MPS Terminal 3 in Tema, which opened less than a month ago.
Learn from one another
The expansion of Team Port in Ghana’s Region of Greater Accra was finished in July of 2019, making it the biggest harbour in Ghana. In Algiers, a new commercial port, El Hamdania, is also ond the way. Mr. Belkhiter, therefore, paid a visit to Tema to see how a modern terminal is operating.
“I was impressed with the new Terminal 3 at Tema Port; the MPS Terminal. Everything goes smoothly and all the drivers have to go through a booth with no human interaction. It is a state-of-the-art infrastructure,” the trade advisor explains.
Mr. Belkhiter is looking forward to bringing his knowledge to Algieria and he hopes the two maritime sectors can work closer together in the future:
“It’s is possible to implement and learn from Ghana. The two countries share a lot of experiences and Algieria could also be a help for Sub-Saharan countries because we have good infrastructure that could assist as an entry point to Europe.”