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Tourism Minister hints on implementing ‘Beyond the Return’ next year

Minister for Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, Barbara Oteng Gyasi has disclosed that her outfit is working towards implementing the ‘Beyond the Return’ initiative next year.

According to her, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all preparations for the ‘big’ implementation in 2021 will be carried out virtually this year, which includes the launch of a campaign set to take place before the end of May, 2020.

After the country saw massive patronage of the ‘Year of Return’ initiative in 2019, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo launched a new initiative to engage Africans in the diaspora and people of African descent more positively in trade and investing which he called ‘Beyond the Return’.

2020 started with some positive strides in achieving the objective as many Africans in the diaspora began setting up businesses. This includes a 28-year-old New Yorker, Deijha Gordon who started operating a food truck business in Ghana.

The outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic, however, threw a lot of plans including the new initiative off balance, as countries around the world shut their gates to foreigners and inter-country trade as a means of curbing the importation of COVID-19 cases.

In the midst of the uncertainty and the grim future COVID-19 presents to nations around the world, the Tourism Minister still believes it is possible to work with the initiative to drive a lot of gains and revenues for the country.

Speaking on Accra-based Joy Fm on Saturday, May 16, Barbara Oteng Gyasi said an inter-ministerial committee has been set to spearhead the project and ensure its success.

“Currently because of the COVID, work on the Beyond the Return stalled a bit but we are working to launch it this month, before the end of May, we will launch Beyond the Return virtually. The cabinet has constituted an inter-ministerial committee to spearhead this project so it’s a project we believe is very important to the country and if successfully executed, we stand to derive a lot of gains and revenue from it.

“So it has not been abandoned, work is still ongoing, for this year, most of the things that we would do would be virtual and then we will work towards implementation in a big way from next year. So beyond the return is still alive,” she said.


Source: ABC News

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