Dzifa Attivor Signed Deal For National Airline
By Alfred Dogbey
The Minister for Transport, Madam Dzifa Aku Attivor, has set the stage for the resurrection of the country’s airline, which was collapsed under the erstwhile ex-President, John Agyekum Kufuor-led New Patriotic Party (NPP) administration.
Mrs. Attivor, who led the Ministry to sign a contract for Transaction Advisory Services on behalf of government towards the resurrection of the National Airline said, “the establishment of a reliable home-base National Airline is in line with the Ministry’s Policy of making the Kotoka International Airport an aviation hub within the West African sub-region”.
This agreement was signed with Messrs PriceWaterHouseCoopers, who has been selected as the Transaction Advisors (TA) for the establishment of the National Airline. The signing was done at a short ceremony on Wednesday at the Mövenpick Ambassador Hotel in Accra.
According to the Transport Minister, the return of the national airline, would be done through Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement, which is targeted to “provide regional, sub-regional and inter-continental air transport service”.
The national airline she noted, “would facilitate the process to enable Ghana to gain back the FAA category One (1) status”, adding that, it “would compete with other carriers operating in Ghana and could force fares down to the benefit of the travelling Ghanaian public and win back the pride of Ghana as it flies the Ghana flag as in the past”.
She explained that “in the transport sector, there are enormous pressures from the citizenry, civil society organizations and the entire population for an improved delivery of infrastructure and services in all modes of Transport including the establishment of an airline”.
The Minister clarified that, the work of PWC, is to “come on board to undertake various business studies, develop plans, financial and economic models, advice and manage a procurement process including preparation of bidding documents, evaluation and negotiations for the engagement of a Private Sector Partner with proven expertise and experience in the airline business to partner Government to establish and run a National Flag carrier for Ghana”.
She indicated that, “the Transaction Advisors are expected to work closely with the Ministry as well as the Ministry of Finance to ensure that the project is brought to a financial closure in an efficient and timely manner to achieve the desired objectives”.
Mrs. Dzifa Attivor, said Government has embraced the PPP option as .an alternative financing arrangement that would ensure adequate
investment in the provision and maintenance of various infrastructure and services in the Country, due to Government’s budgetary resources.
According to her, “We have learnt from other Countries such as the United States, UK, Brazil, Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia etc who have successfully implemented PPP models and options for the provision of infrastructure and services for• their people”.
She explained that, “Following the development of a PPP policy framework by Government therefore, the Ministry of Transport has for the past few months been working closely with the Public Investment Division (PID) of the Ministry of Finance on a number of Projects in the Transport Sector which have been proposed to be financed through PPPs”.
“Two key projects among these are the Boankra Inland Port & Eastern Railway Line Project and the Establishment of a National Airline.
“For the two projects, the Ministry in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance and with funding by the World Bank has gone through procurement processes for the engagement of Transaction Advisors to manage the PPP process to engage a Strategic Partners for the Projects”.
The Minister took the opportunity on behalf of the President, John Dramani Mahama and the government to thank the World Bank for their support in providing guidance and funding for the engagement of the Transaction Advisors, adding “We know we can continue to count on the continuous support of the Bank for other PPP transactions to develop the transport sector”.