Transport Ministry backs Airport company’s service charge review

A Deputy Minister of Transport, Hassan Tampuli, has backed the Ghana Airport Company’s (GACL) request to have their user fees and services reviewed upwards to enable them to maintain the new airports that are springing up across the country.
“The government is committed to improving the aviation sector to ensure that the country becomes an aviation hub, however, one of the critical agencies responsible for planning, developing, managing and maintaining all airports and aerodromes in Ghana -GACL is pushing for a review of its Airport Passenger Service Charge (APSC) in order to properly maintain and manage effectively the new airports being developed in some of the regions”, he said.

Speaking to the press on the sidelines of a day’s visit to the Kumasi and Tamale airports by the leadership and members of the Select Committee of Parliament’s Roads and Transport, and officials of GACL, led by the sector minister, Hassan Tampuli, he said “now revenue from APSC for Accra is also a subject of a loan facility so payment more or less goes to amortise those loans, so we need excess funds to be able to maintain these facilities.”


He, therefore, underscored the need for a sustained revenue stream, even itemise them in the budget and the purpose it was going to be used for.

He said the ministry was excited that leadership and members of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Roads and Transport appreciated the fact that the GHC5 that was in the price buildup of domestic air travel was woefully inadequate.

Mr Tampuli said “ so we appreciate the fact that they recognise it needs to be reviewed, so they have asked that we come with a justification paper for us to be able to go through the numbers and see whether there is a justification.”


Expected benefits

Mr Tampuli also explained that “we have not moved into these facilities yet, in order not to get to a point where it would be difficult to maintain the facility, we need to be proactive and get revenue stream put in the price build up way before the opening of these airports.”

“We need to be ahead of the curve and get a stable revenue stream and I believe when Parliament resumes from recess, these are matters that would be considered in the next meeting”.

The Chairman of Parliament’s Road and Transport committee, Kennedy Osei Nyarko, urged the ministry and officials of GACL to submit the law mandating them to review the user fees and charges to the committee.

He expressed concern about the paltry amount GACL charged for domestic passengers “now they use to charge GHC5 for all our domestic airports, [Ho,Wa, Tamale] every passenger passing through domestic airport.


“All international passengers are charged $200 at Terminal 3, and that is the money they are using to support the domestic airports, how can you have a domestic facility so viable and vibrant’’? He asked.

“I have instructed them to bring back the law so we will be able to amend it, they should not be charging less than 50ghc to maintain this airport. But we want them to run the numbers with us and justify it.

‘‘I can assure you that if we don’t look for revenue stream to maintain it, in less than a year, all these beautiful edifices would go down the drain”, he said.

GACL


The Managing Director of GACL, Pamela Djamson Tettey, indicated that the company was resolved to push through with the APSC and also work closely with the sector minister to ensure that GACL met with Parliament when it resumed to attain the objective.

Ranking member of the Parliament’s Select Committee, Kwame Governs Agbodza, advised the GACL to be more innovative to raise funds to sustain the domestic airports without recourse to the government.

Both Kumasi and Tamale airports are nearing completion and are expected to be fully handed over sometime next year, according to management of GACL.

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