Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has stated that the National Cathedral has the potential to be a big generator of economic growth.
As a result, he has urged for a strategic rethink of the ongoing development debates.
Speaking at the Ghana Tourism Investment Summit 2023, he described the project as a solid infrastructure that could considerably increase the tourism sector.
According to him, the cathedral has the potential to become a pilgrimage site for millions of Christians across Africa.
He added that the cathedral after completion could attract visitors with an average spending of $3,000 each, translating into substantial economic benefits for the country.
“As we look at something like the Cathedral that has economic benefits beyond what we see…In Africa, we have some 600 million people who are Christians so imagine Ghana as the new Jerusalem and these 600 million people floating through with $3,000 to spend, it is a very different reality.”
“Even as we contend with it and fight about it, let’s think of this triangle and find a reason why we should also add that as part of the infrastructure base as we build a society with a strong, resilient, and robust future,” he said.
“This whole issue about the National Cathedral, in my mind, is the third leg of this triangle because how do you build a society in which you are clear in defining who you are politically? How do you build a society in which the economic engine is growing, and how do you contain that within the spiritual realm that ensures stability in the ages to come? And so, even as we look at something like the National Cathedral that has economic benefits beyond what we see, both in Israel and the Hajj, they realize about $6 billion to $8 billion a year and in Africa, we have some 600 million people who are Christians and so imagine Ghana as the new Jerusalem. It will be a different reality.”
The Finance Minister emphasized the government’s commitment to transforming the tourism and arts industry, highlighting its economic potential for growth and employment, and its potential to positively influence other industries and boost overall economic well-being.
“We are looking at increasing Ghana’s international tourist arrivals, and so the Ghanaian economy is going to continue to significantly depend on tourism and the creative sectors to provide literally two out of the ten jobs that will be created going into the future.”