Yaoundé - 13 April 2024 -
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Cameroon orders quick removal of abandoned ships from Douala Port

Cameroon orders quick removal of abandoned ships from Douala Port
  • Comments   -   Wednesday, 03 April 2024 09:15

(Business in Cameroon) - On March 11, 2024, Transport Minister Jean Ernest Ngalle Bibehe issued a statement giving a 90-day deadline to the owners of eleven ships that have been abandoned "for several years" at the fishing port of Douala. After this period, the minister warned, the owners would lose their rights to the ships, which would then be declared as wrecks according to current regulations.

This announcement echoes a similar statement made about a year ago. Minister Ngalle Bibehe's recent declaration serves as a second formal notice to the ship owners before officially designating the vessels as wrecks.

To clear the congested waters and quays of Douala Port, cluttered for years with shipwrecks and other maritime debris, the Port Authority of Douala (PAD), the public enterprise managing the port facility, initiated a comprehensive operation in 2018 to remove the shipwrecks. This cleanup effort is the first of its kind in 30 years. As of May 7, 2019, according to PAD's latest report, 25 of the 80 shipwrecks littering the quays, waterways, and docks had been removed.

PAD estimates that due to these shipwrecks, the waterways and quays of Cameroon's primary port are only operating at about 30% capacity, significantly hindering the port's productivity.

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