The President of the Republic and Commander in Chief (C-in-C) of the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo successfully launched the National Integrated Maritime Strategy (NIMS) on Tuesday 29 August 2023 during the 3rd edition of the International Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference (IMDEC) at Burma Camp, Accra.
The President in his keynote address said the implementation plan of NIMS seeks to bolster effective collaboration amongst key stakeholders within Ghana’s security architecture and international partners for a safe and secure maritime domain.
He stressed that the heightened threat of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea (GoG) calls for littoral West African States to prioritize their maritime domains emphasizing that the ongoing international discourse on the exploitation of the blue economy has called for countries to safeguard their territorial waters hence adopting measures in keeping our waters safe.
On his part, the Chief of the Naval Staff, Rear Admiral Issah Adam Yakubu said the key takeaway from IMDEC 23 in line with its theme; ‘Consolidating the Gains made in the Gulf of Guinea: The Role of Stakeholders and Technology in Sustaining a Safe and Secure Maritime Domain’, will be to develop a regional and international framework to particularly deal with the challenges of piracy and other transnational maritime crimes.
The Deputy Minister for Defence, Honourable Kofi Amankwa Manu in his closing remarks on day two of the Conference and Exhibition, appealed to the Chiefs of Navies to sustain and improve the pace at which they are handling the challenges that hinder the collective aspirations of GoG States. He expressed optimism that the outcome of IMDEC 23 will assist in hastening the processes towards achieving the objectives of the Yaoundé Architecture.
The Yaoundé Architecture is an Inter-Regional Coordination Centre responsible for coordination and information-sharing which connects Regional Maritime Security Centres for Central and West African states.
IMDEC 23 brought together regional and international Chiefs of Navies to help address critical issues bothering on maritime security on the African continent. It also focused on fostering dialogue and collaboration among key stakeholders in sustaining a safe and secured maritime domain.
The Conference and Exhibition saw in attendance over 300 participants from 22 countries including 10 Chiefs of Navies and Heads of Coast Guards, a number of international and local exhibitors and sponsors as well as over 30 speakers.
The C-in-C also used the occasion to commission the new exhibition hall built to accommodate the growing event.