Africa’s largest black-owned shipyard, Sandock Austral is taking part in the International Maritime Defence Exhibition & Conference (IMDEC) in Ghana’s capital Accra between 6 and 8 July 2021.
This is after it teamed up with Ghanaian defense contractor Petram Fortis, to offer world-class maritime security solutions to Ghana through the newly established joint venture Petram Sandock Maritime Systems.
IMDEC is the largest maritime security exhibition and conference in West Africa and this year’s edition expects to attract over 15 Chiefs of Navies, Chiefs of Air Staff and 300 international officials.
Arthur Kweku Ackah-Yensu, CEO of Petram-Fortis, explains the joint venture is proposing a total system to meet Ghanaian maritime security and fisheries protection beyond just naval vessels but also includes land and air elements.
Like other countries in the Gulf of Guinea, Ghana faces the challenges of maritime piracy, illegal fishing and other maritime crimes, such as drug smuggling.
As much as 95 percent of all kidnappings at sea in 2020 occurred in the Gulf of Guinea, which saw 84 attacks on ships, with 135 seafarers kidnaped for ransom that year, according to the International Maritime Bureau.
Established in 2016, Petram Fortis is Ghana’s leading defence company and has supplied defence solutions to Ghana’s armed forces, including artillery, communications systems, peacekeeping support and more.
The company is a solutions and technology supplier that employs engineers across several disciplines as it has pioneered the development of local Ghanaian Defense Engineering capabilities, leading to the establishment of a meaningful local defence industry.
Petram Fortis calls on its team as well as a vast network of experts to cover everything a country could need, from vehicles to camp systems, naval vessels and aircraft. This capability now includes Sandock Austral, which is eager to work with partners across the continent, according to CEO Prasheen Maharaj.
“Petram Fortis is the largest defence company in Ghana; Sandock is the largest indigenously owned shipyard in Africa. It makes sense to have this partnership in Ghana,” he said. “I don’t think any other partnership will stand up to what we have to offer,” Maharaj adds.
The Sandock Austral Group includes Sandock Austral Aerospace, Sandock Austral Shipyards, Sandock Austral Defense Engineering Systems and Torpedo South Africa. Capabilities cover weapons stations, missiles, radars, ship construction, and maritime surveillance aircraft, amongst others.
Through the collaboration with Sandrock Austral, Petram Fortis hopes to provide Ghana with solutions to most of its maritime problems and will be highlighting these during IMDEC 2021.
The companies are proposing a holistic maritime security solution comprising of vessels with sensors such as radar and optical systems as well as land-based units, both static and mobile, which provide information to a command and control centre. This intelligence is also applicable to all branches of the armed forces and allows for the protection of Ghana as a whole rather than just its sea or waterways.