The Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company Limited (BOST) is set to begin rehabilitation and expansion works on its petroleum transmission lines from Tema to Akosombo.
This comes as BOST has finally taken delivery of 5,400 pieces of 12-inch pipelines, among other equipment, from the United States of America.
The pipes, which include valves, were procured in 2009 for $63.2 million through a US Eximbank facility, but delayed due to contractual disagreements, and other administrative lapses.
Addressing the media after inspecting the pipes at the Tema Port, Managing Director of BOST, Edwin Provencal, noted that the delivery will enable the company to quicken plans to transport fuel to meet the growing demand in the northern parts of the country and the landlocked countries.
“The arrival could not have come at a better time than now, when the reactivation of the Bolgatanga Depot for export has made it more than necessary for high volumes of petroleum products to be transferred between Tema and Akosombo for onward transmission to Buipe through the river barges to meet the surging demand in the northern regions and the landlocked countries.”
“BOST through the government of Ghana, secured an EXIMBANK USA facility in 2009 to expand the capacity of the pipeline between Tema and Akosombo from 6 inches to 12 inches and also to enhance the storage capacities of the Accra Plains, Kumasi, Buipe and Bolgatanga depots. Under this arrangement, a total of $63.2 million was to be spent on the pipelines. After eleven years of being left to contend with the elements of the weather in the United States, we had to incur an extra expenditure of $8 million for sandblasting and re-coating before shipping arrangements were made to bring the pipes to Ghana at a cost of $2.1 million, ” he said.
Edwin Provencal, who led some members of the company’s board of directors to inspect the pipes, said the new facilities would increase the volume from Tema to Akosombo by three-fold to increase the turnaround time of the barges.
“This will tremendously improve on the utilisation and turnover of our marine assets in line with the vision of making energy affordable. As part of the four-year strategy of BOST to become operationally efficient, we are looking forward to improving the proportion of product volumes carried through the cheapest means of transport,” he added.
He intimated that the company would deploy fibre optic cables along the lines with alert systems to check for intrusion and incidents of vandalism and siphoning of products.
“We will also be deploying drones to constantly patrol the lines from the commencement of the installation to when the actual transmission starts, and we are looking forward to getting the installation to commence by the middle of 2022,” he said.