In a 2016 survey by Port Technology International magazine, 93% of its readership named ‘automation’ as the area that requires the most investment in ports and terminals. Compared to other industries, such as aviation and manufacturing, ports are relative newcomers to automation. However, right across the world, adoption is slow. This is a challenge for many nations’ port authorities but here in Africa there is even greater urgency.
Africa is a major importer and exporter – and with the oil price issue, many need to ramp up their export potential in order to sustain economic growth. Moreover, Africa needs world-class infrastructure in order to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) and support job creation. So how can the region leapfrog the slow pace of change and rapidly develop ports and terminals that are high quality, efficient and competitive?
As with all aspects of infrastructure development in Africa, we need to see strong political will if we are to see port capabilities improve. We also need to see economic reform and market liberalisation…
To read the full article, download the PDF