Mrs Oteng-Gyasi said the programme has also caused an increase of over 200,000 in total arrivals into the country. She said total arrivals in the country this year stood at about 750,000.
Ghana has generated $1.9 billion so far from the Year of Return
Ghana’s Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs Barbara Oteng-Gyasi has revealed that the “Year of Return” programme has so far generated a total of $1.9 billion into the economy.
The minister was speaking at the inauguration of a tourist centre at Anomabo in the Central Region. She also handed over facilities at the Heroes Garden which has been transformed into a Memorial Garden of Return to boost tourism in the town.
Prior to the refurbishment, the Heroes Garden had portrait statues of Kwegyir Aggrey, Ekem Ferguson and Nana Amonoo I of Anomabo. Now other symbolic statues of people of the African diaspora returning “home” have been added.
The tourist centre is expected to serve as an information centre and provide a welcoming environment for tourists.
Mrs Oteng-Gyasi explained that the government was working to ensure that Ghanaians and especially people of Anomabo benefit from the tourist centre.
She said the “Year of Return” has improved the livelihoods of some Ghanaians as well as between the country and the African diaspora.
“There has been tremendous community involvement which has stimulated the local economy including hoteliers, tour operating and other related businesses.”
She added that the programme has put a global spotlight on Ghana and cemented the country’s pan-African legacy.
About the “Year of Return”
The “Year of Return” is a year-long event of the return of the descendants of the first enslaved Africans from James Town in Accra to James town in Virginia in the United States of America (USA).
The minister said the “Year of Return” has been successful.
She added that the memorial garden and tourist centre at Anomabo was one of the many social impacts and community development projects and part of the ‘Year of Return’ programme. She entreated the community to take the opportunities the centre will bring to improve their economic wellbeing.
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