Operator of the Tema Port expansion project, Meridian Port Services (MPS), has lamented the politicization of the tax waivers granted for its operations.
Parliament in 2016, granted a tax waiver to the tune of 832 million dollars.
But some have suggested a possible review of the amount citing possible instances of downward review of the project cost from 1.5 billion dollars.
MPS is yet to fully utilize the waivers granted to it by Parliament. However its CEO, Mohammed Samara tells Citi Business News the controversies hinder further investments which must be stopped.
“The tax waiver is not money given; it is an amount waived and a huge chunk of it is futuristic in nature and not something that is happening at the moment. There are certain waivers which have not been triggered. The only thing that has been triggered which is the lowest is that on imported goods.”
“You cannot respond to everything that is written and especially if it is misinformed or misleading…it’s really awkward and sad when such things are said about MPS and other companies investing in Ghana,” Mr. Samara added.
MPS Limited has been working on the expansion project since 2016.
The Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority has a thirty percent stake in the company.
Fifteen percent is guaranteed, while the remaining is expected to be obtained through the re-injection of royalties due the GPHA.
Meridian Port Services which is funding the project under a public-private-partnership (PPP) program, is one of three companies involved in a joint venture with the Ghana Ports and Harbors Authority (GPHA) to undertake the Tema Port expansion.
The other two companies are Bolloré Africa Logistics and APM Terminals.
The $1.5 billion project, which will take four years to complete, will involve the building of four deep water berths and an access channel to accommodate larger vessels with high capacity equipment.
This will create the largest cargo port in West Africa, and one of the best in Africa, with a capacity of 3.5 million 20-foot equivalent unit (TEU) per annum.