The MLA for East Belfast was speaking after hundreds of thousands of visitors flocked to Belfast across the four-day event, enjoying 50 vessels from around the world.
Chris Lyttle MLA said: “The Tall Ships event has been a massive success for Belfast. I was among the thousands of visitors enjoying the festival over the past few days and it was fantastic to see people from all over the world enjoy all that a new Belfast has to offer.
“This event has projected a positive image of Belfast, signalling it as a welcoming city for everyone and putting it on the world events map. I want to congratulate everybody involved in the organisation – the hard work and investment paid off.
“The Tall Ships festival was a huge success for the economy and tourism, attracting tourists that will have been so impressed by our friendly city they will return again and explore other fantastic sights across Northern Ireland.”