The Board Chairman of the Ghana Integrated Iron and Steel Development Corporation (GIISDEC), Farouk Aliu Mahama, has assured that his outfit is poised to provide strategic direction and the needed dedication to develop a vibrant Integrated Iron and Steel industry.

He said the dream for real industrialisation to build an integrated Iron and Steel industry has been on the horizon for far too long and that lessons learnt from the past have informed his outfit to do things differently to make the dream a reality.

“We are poised to define our focus and chart a roadmap to achieving the President’s vision of an Integrated Iron and Steel Industry,” he said.

Mr Mahama was speaking at the opening of a two-day Stakeholders’ Workshops held in Accra to develop a Masterplan for Ghana’s Iron and Steel Industry.

The Masterplan, which has four major areas to deal with, includes Mining, Refinery, Smelting and Downstream which are critical to the achievement of a vibrant industry.

“This Masterplan will enhance and enrich our collaboration with our stakeholders to develop critical infrastructures like Port and Railway Infrastructure, to enable transportation of Iron, Steel and other bulk materials, adequate Power, and best environmental practices,” he noted.

He said the Board and Management of GIISDEC were spearheading the stakeholders’ consultation workshops to build a Masterplan that would be acceptable to all stakeholders for the operationalisation of the Corporation.

He added that the final Masterplan would be unveiled to Ghanaians by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the Minster for Lands and Natural Resources when completed.

Mr Mahama, who is also the Member of Parliament (MP) for Yendi, noted that there was a need for the new GIISDEC Board to build on the foundation and positive gains of his predecessors to achieve their targeted goals.

He said the dream of GIISDEC to build an integrated Iron and Steel industry was a national agenda and an investment for collective future that requires the input and collaboration from all to make history.

The hardworking GIISDEC Board Chairman announced that his team was five months ahead of the timelines set out for the development of the Masterplan which he said was a result of his determination to work together with his Board Members, Management, Staff and Stakeholders to get the Masterplan for Ghana’s Iron and Steel Industry before the end of 2022.

According to him, the Masterplan was necessary for the industry in order to provide technical guidance and practical direction at every step of the way to develop the entire iron and steel value chain to boost the Ghanaian economy.

“If anyone ever doubted the realisation of the vision of the President to build a thriving integrated iron and steel industry, let him look no further than this key project and others GIISDEC is undertaking.”

He said the Masterplan would define the full scope of Ghana’s Integrated Iron and Steel Industry and also ensure the full utilization of the iron reserves the country was endowed with.

The Yendi Legislator observed that GIISDEC had become a key component of government’s industrialisation and transformation agenda and that as a result, GIISDEC is building partnerships with the private sector to attract significant investment into the industry to enhance the economy.

He indicated that the global trends indicate a growing demand for iron and its related artefacts that enforces their resolve to make Ghana the iron and steel hub in Africa.

The MP, however, disclosed environmental concerns, transportation bottlenecks, high-energy intensive process of steel production and the need to develop clean alternatives in terms of energy solutions were their major challenges.

“We shall work together to address these challenges as prescribed by the Masterplan,” he said.