Mrs Dzifa Attivor, the Minister of Transport on Monday inaugurated a $15 million oil and gas facility for the Regional Maritime University (RMU) in Accra.
The facility, which is under the government’s oil and gas capacity project, seeks to train students in the areas of oil and gas operations and also to equip them practically for the industry.
Mrs Attivor, expressed the hope that the equipment including well control simulator and processor operation simulator would support in the maritime education in the sub-region.
The inauguration also conceded with the celebration of the World Maritime Day on the theme: “Maritime Education and Training.”
The Day is an official United Nations Day celebrated every year to focus attention on the importance of shipping safety, maritime security and the marine environment and to emphasis particular aspect of the International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) work.
She said the importance of the Maritime industry to global trade could not be over emphasised as Maritime transport is the principal vehicle for the movement of more than 90 per cent of global trade.
The Minister said the industry has diversity of stakeholders of all nationalities in various facets of shipping operations, which required specialised education and training.
“Indeed ‘Education and Training’ is a key component and the engine that drives the Maritime industry as well as any other industry,” she added.
She said Ghana, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Cameroon and the Gambia, are collaborating over the years to provide their citizens with the relevant training through the University.
Mrs Attivor said the Ghana Maritime Authority through its seafarer’s examination, training and certification department and in collaboration with the University has over the years continued to produce educated, trained and qualified Maritime personnel.
“I believed that human element is critical resource needed for the successful operation of all sectors of the Maritime industry,” she said.
She called on management of the University to collaborate with the guidance and counseling department of educational institutions to market Maritime career and courses offered by the University.
Mr Augustus Addy-Lamptey, the Pro-Vost, RMU said the University is also funding a workshop facility for the training of their students and also provide semi-skilled labour for the oil and gas industry.
He said in future, the University intended to offer Masters in offshore engineering with specialisation in pipeline engineering.
He said with these complement of equipment, the University could train people to provide services to the oil and gas sector.
Mr Koji Sekimizu, the IMO Secretary-General said shipping is vitally important to the global community, playing key role in sustainable development, since the world depended on safe, secure and efficient shipping industry.
He said as a truly international industry, shipping needs a global network of specialist education and training establishments to ensure a continuing stream of high-caliber of recruits.
The Secretary-General said Maritime education and training must be of a high and consistent quality throughout the world.
The training must be skilled-based, competence-based while utilising the latest technology, he said.