July saw the ceremonial sod cutting for a project to build West Africa’s biggest bitumen plant: a joint venture between Ghana’s oil company GOIL and Societe Multinationale de Bitumes (SMB) of the Ivory Coast. The project, which will cost around US$35 million according to GOIL, is in Tema Ghana. With a capacity of 8,000tonnes, it will produce AC10 and AC20 bitumen and polymer modified bitumen (PMB).
Speaking at the ceremony, Ghana’s minister of energy John Peter Amewu said: “Due to the success of the PMB, which is proven to give a longer lifespan to asphalted roads, the Ghana Highways Authority also plans to continue using it for all major highways resurfacing or construction in the country.”
Ghana’s road network of over 63,000km needs repair and modernisation. According to management consultants Investigroup, which has an office in Ghana, a rehabilitation programme of $1.5 billion/year for the next ten years would be needed to get the roads up to a good standard.