The president of the Xunta, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, participated in the act of the delivery of the “compostela” 300,000 to a young American. The President of the Government, who was accompanied by the Director of Tourism of Galicia, Nava Castro, and by the Archbishop of Santiago de Compostela, Julián Barrio, stressed that this was the first time the figure of 300,000 pilgrims in Galicia in a single year had been reached. He also outlined his belief that if we take advantage of the experience gained over these years, the figure of 400,000 annual pilgrims may become a reality in the future.
For the head of the Galician Government, the Way is a route that looks toward the future, but that has its roots firmly embedded in the past. So, the achievements to date are down to there being people who believed, at the end of the 20th century, that the Way of St. James could succeed in the new millennium.
With regard to this, Feijóo said that the year 1993 was a turning point thanks to the commitment of the Government adopted by all of Galicia and by the different public institutions. He added that it was a year in which history was made thanks to the celebration of the first great Xacobeo and the declaration of the Way as World Heritage.
As the leader of the region emphasised, the development of the Jacobean route is the result of a coordinated strategy that began with the Xacobeo Plan in 1993 and continues today with the master plan, launched in 2015 to work with the horizon of 2021 and which aims to make the holy year 2021 historic.
Moreover, the head of the Galician Government explained that there are three main challenges that the Government has on the horizon with regard to the Way: to advance with the development of the routes, improve promotion and also prepare for Xacobeo 2121 at the organisational level with the upcoming launch of the Interdepartmental Committee.