The Minister for Railways Development, Mr Joe Ghartey, has given the assurance that the Ministry would engage the services and expertise of local engineers towards improving the infrastructure needs of the railway sector.
He said the Ministry would explore the legal framework of the local content and participation law to to engage the services of engineers in the country.
Mr Joe Ghartey said this when a delegation of engineers from the Ghana Consulting Engineers Association (GCEA) paid a courtesy call on him at his office in Accra.
He noted that the railway sector would become the single largest investor destination for the next four years since government had decided to revamp the sector to transform the national economy.
The minister noted that the railway sector was once viabrant and productive, which impacted greatly on the economies of Tema, Nsawam,Sekondi-Takoraidi and Tarkwa.
However, he said the railway sector was facing huge challenges including; broken and dysfunctional locomotives, while railway lines had been taken over by squatters and encroachers.
The Minister stated that the government had earmarked some priority projects to transform the sector and that when such projects were fully implemented, would create an industrial hub.
Mr Ghartey said the Ministry was in the process of reviewing the legislative and regulatory framework of the sector to enhance its operations.
“This is important because the sector has been left for years without any activities and we therefore have no choice but to work with the private sector to accomplish our vision,”
He said the Railway Development Authority would be divided so that one section would deal with infrastructure needs of the sector adding that the development would change the economic fortunes of the country, with springing up of new cities along rail lines across the country.
Mr Ghartey urged the local engineers to have faith in the government and offer their expertise whenever the need arose.
The local consulting engineers are natural allies of the government and the private sector in the nation’s quest to develop safe and sound infrastructure.
Mr Albert Ogyiri, a member of the Association, appealed to the government to give priority to indigenous engineers to sustain and improve local content participation.