Port Managers Conference Focuses on Improving Intra-African Trade, Infrastructure Logistics

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Managers of Africa’s ports met in February.

How to make African ports more competitive was the issue on the table at the 38th Port Management Association of West and Central Africa in Dakar, Senegal.

Managers of Africa’s ports met to deliberate on how globalization should facilitate intra-African trade.

This year’s event was titled “Quality Approach in African Ports Toward ISO Certification: Challenges and Prospects” and was held February 13-17, 2017. It featured Africa and global port experts, including speakers from World Trade Organization and the African Development Bank.

“We must, first of all, increase the role of intra-African trade, which is very low, less than 15 percent and the dynamics of Africa in world trade, which is less than 3 percent,” said Cheikh Kante, director general of the autonomous port of Dakar.

Beyond questioning the economic model of African ports, participants at the summit also pointed out challenges of infrastructure. African ports play an essential role in the economic growth of the continent, but they are still struggling in several areas, such as infrastructure and logistics. The organizers are aware of these issues and have made them major priorities.

The Dakar meeting set the stage for sustainable solutions to make Africa a hub for trade and maritime business.

During the delibrations dedicated to “Port Community System, Quality Acceleration for African Logistics,” SOGET gave a testimony of best practices of change management with port stakeholders in the context of PCS implementation.

The PMAWCA is a subregional intergovernmental economic organization, consisting of 22 consistent member ports and nine associate members, including landlocked countries and maritime organizations.

The members all are located along the West Coast of the African continent extending from Mauritania to Angola.

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