The Minister will formally open a new stretch of the path that runs the four miles from Flint through to Greenfield Dock.
The Welsh Government has invested up to £2 million a year since 2007 to realise its ambition of creating a continuous, 870 mile path that runs right around the coastline of Wales.
The Flint to Greenfield Dock section of path has benefitted from £750,000 of funding from the Coastal Access Improvements Programme (CAIP) which has funded improvements including new rights of way, resurfacing work, and the installation of new gates to make the route more accessible to walkers.
For this section of path, Welsh Government and European funding has also been has also been supplemented by additional revenue from local businesses and community groups keen to maximise the local benefits that the Wales Coast Path will bring.
Speaking ahead of the opening, the Minister said:
“I am pleased to be visiting Flintshire to open this important section of the path, and delighted that we remain on course for the formal opening of the whole of the Wales Coast Path on 5th May 2012.
“The Wales Coast Path is already ensuring world wide recognition for our beautiful coast. Indeed only last month, Lonely Planet named Wales the greatest region on Earth to visit in 2012.
“We expect the Wales Coat Path to attract an extra 100,000 new visitors to our coast each year. This is great news for coastal businesses, great news for our tourism industry and great news for Wales’ economy as a whole, particularly at this economically challenging time.
“The fact that the Wales Coast Path will be open ahead of the London 2012 Olympics, when the eyes of the world will be on the UK is another real plus point. However the path is not just for tourists, and I really hope it will encourage people in Flintshire and across Wales to get out and about and enjoy their local coast line and country side”.
Councillor Tony Sharps, Flintshire County Council's Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Environment, said:
“The Flintshire Countryside Service and its coastal rangers have worked incredibly hard to make improvements to huge sections of the Path. This project is not just about a path, it's also been about re-linking the communities to the coast and improving the quality of the environment, both natural and man-made.
“We are very thankful to the Countryside Service and rangers, workers businesses, volunteers and community groups for their strong support."
The Minister will mark the opening of the new section of path by lighting a beacon at Greenfield Dock at 12 noon. A second beacon will be lit at the same time at Flint.
The Minister congratulated Welsh local authorities, including Flintshire and the Countryside Council for Wales on their hard work so far, but emphasised that there was a still a lot to do ahead of the opening of the Wales Coast Path on 5th May 2012, and beyond.
Improvements to the alignment and the quality of the route will continue with Welsh Government support until March 2013.