News Column

Port Authority's Revenue Leaped to D633 Million in 2012 - Finance Director

February 6, 2014

Aji Fatou Faal and Bekai Njie

The director of Finance at The Gambia Ports Authority (GPA) disclosed Monday that his institution realised an increase in revenue by 11%, jumping from D568M in 2011 to D633M in 2012. Speaking during the scrutiny of the Authority's annual report and financial statement for the year 2012 by members of the Public Accounts and Public Enterprises Committees (PAC/PEC) of the National Assembly , Tamsir Sallah revealed that the net profit before tax had increased to D100.4M in 2012 from D77.7M in 2011. "Net profit after tax also increased from D54.8M in 2011 to D56.8M in 2012 despite the increase in corporation tax charges from D22.9M in 2011 to D43.6M in 2012," he indicated. Taking the PAC/PEC members through the annual report, the Authority's deputy managing director, Ousman Jobarteh , explained that the import traffic, which constitutes about 79% of throughput, is dominated by traditional commodities such as sugar, rice, flour, cement and liquid bulk products. He continued: "Containerised cargo, which accounts for approximately 68% of the yearly import traffic, has registered a rise by 1% compared to 67% in 2011. During the year under review, the number of vessel calls increased by 2% from 358 in 2011 to 364 in 2012. Net Registered Tonnage increased by 16% from 1, 412, 059 in 2011 to 1,635, 857 in 2012. The Gross Registered Tonnage also increased by 11% from 3, 058, 000 in 2011 to 3, 409, 059 in 2012. The above figures indicate a continuing change in average vessels size and load factor." But despite the adversities in other operational variables that are beyond the Authority's control, Jobarteh insisted that the Ports would strive to continue improving its overall performance especially in ship operations, cargo throughput, handling productivity and ship turnaround time. He said it is pleasing to note that their human resource base has contributed immensely towards the achievement of the Authority's success in the year under review. Constraints Given the large volume of cargo vessels flowing to the Ports and the limited space available for the stacking of containers at its premises, Jobarteh informed members that their management deemed it necessary to acquire a space within the capital city for the piling of empty containers. To this end, he indicated that an arrangement was made between the Authority and The Gambia Groundnut Cooperation (GGC) to acquire the available space at the latter's premises for this activity. Modern mode of operations Jobarteh assured that the Authority would continue to implement modern management techniques to improve efficiency and productivity, coupled with aggressive marketing techniques to attract new businesses and/or investments into the Port. Members' reaction Commenting on the GPA report, Hon. Lamin Jammeh of Illiassa urged the Authority to maintain the momentum of liquidity given that its assets are more than the liabilities. He however urged the GPA to pay its debt to The Gambia Revenue Authority (GRA), reminding them that out of the D98M debt, it only settled D20M. Hon. Njie Darboe of Jarra West wanted to know the level of progress as regards the implementation of the joint venture between the government of The Gambia and PEARL to invest in industrial, commercial and agriculture projects. Hon. Alagie Sillah of Banjul North stressed the need for the GPA to invest in the reconstruction of Bund Road given that the stretch is a strategic way to the Authority. The Majority leader and NAM for Serrekunda East, Hon. Fabakary Tombong Jatta, urged the Ports to be 100% compliant next time they appear before the Session. The reports were subsequently adopted.

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Source: AllAfrica

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