Shaping the future - GulfToday

Shaping the future


Hamdan Bin Mohammed and Albert II are being briefed during their visit to the Expo 2020 Dubai.

Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, met with Prince of Monaco Albert II at the UAE Pavilion at Expo 2020.

The meeting was attended by Sheikh Mansoor Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum; Reem Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General, Expo 2020 Dubai; Mohamed Bin Hadi Al Hussaini, Minister of State for Financial Affairs; Dr Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Entrepreneurship and SMEs; and HE Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri, UAE Minister of State for Advanced Technology.

Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed welcomed the Prince of Monaco and his accompanying delegation and expressed his wish that the two nations will be able to expand cooperation in various future-oriented sectors.

Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed accompanied the Prince of Monaco on a tour of the UAE Pavilion and discussed ways of strengthening bilateral relations and expanding economic, investment and cultural ties.

Prince Albert II of Monaco praised the progress the UAE has attained in various fields and its unique sustainable development model that focuses on the growth of vital sectors that are shaping the future of our world. He stressed on the importance of taking advantage of the exceptional opportunities offered by Expo 2020 Dubai to advance global development and build a more prosperous future for the planet.

Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed also toured the Monaco Pavilion at Expo 2020. Sheikh Hamdan was briefed on the design theme of the Monaco Pavilion, which is inspired by the ‘Rock of Monaco’, a gem-like polygonal structure that reflects the country’s national, cultural and environmental identity, as well as its extensive experience in education, construction, science, power generation and other vital sectors.

The Dubai Crown Prince and Prince Albert II of Monaco witnessed the signing of an agreement on the avoidance of double taxation between the UAE and Monaco. The agreement was signed by Mohamed Bin Hadi Al Hussaini, UAE’s Minister of State for Financial Affairs, and Monaco’s Minister of Finance and Economy.

India Pavilion attracts 3 lakh visitors: The India Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai has emerged as one of the most-visited pavilions at Expo 2020 Dubai with the number of visitors crossing 3 lakh in just 43 days on November 12. The pavilion was inaugurated on October 1 by Minister of Commerce & Industry, Consumer Affairs & Food & Public Distribution and Textiles, Shri Piyush Goyal.

“The huge interest of visitors in India pavilion is a sign of confidence on India’s resilience and opportunities, besides the vibrant culture of the country, which is in full display in different state weeks being held in the pavilion. The pavilion has been visited by 31 country delegations, and 175 high-profile visitors have also graced it with their visit. With this, 199 G2B and B2B meetings have taken place at the pavilion along with the Startup pitching sessions. It is a matter of great satisfaction that 15 FIIs have already committed to fund Startups,” said Dr Aman Puri, Consul General of India in Dubai and Deputy Commissioner General of India at Expo 2020.

Several business sessions and conferences pertaining to the investment opportunities were organised by the states of Gujarat, Karnataka & Ladakh in October. Apart from these, the India Pavilion also witnessed an array of cultural activities during the festive season, especially associated with Dusshera, Navratri and Diwali celebrations.

In November, the India pavilion is hosting a series of business & cultural activities from Telangana, Rajasthan and Maharashtra on a global pedestal. These state-specific weeks are holding many engaging activities displaying their culture, tradition and tremendous business opportunities. While renewable energy, space and housing and urban affairs sectors have already seen policymakers and business leaders participating in the interactive sessions at the pavilion, oil & gas and textiles are two sectors to showcase India’s capabilities during this month.  

Bilateral conferences including the India-GCC Business conference, which was held this week, are also one of the major attractions of the India Pavilion engagements.

The month of December will see participation from states like Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh & Kerala and key sectors like Electronics and Information Technology, Energy Conservation, Environment & Sustainability, Higher Education & Skills, Tribal Affairs, Spices & Tourism.

“Rajasthan week is currently on at the pavilion and will be followed by the Maharashtra week. Along with the cultural diversity and vibrancy, India’s innovative capability is also in full display with special focus on startups — Karnataka and Telangana startups have received immense attention of the investors already. It is a blend of culture and business opportunities that is attracting the visitors to the India Pavilion,” said Dr Puri.

Several government dignitaries, celebrities, businessmen and bankers including Minister of State (MoS) for External Affairs and Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs V Muraleedharan; Mr. Rishad Premji, Chairman, Wipro Ltd.; Sh. Dinesh Kumar Khara Chairman, State Bank of India; Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone; Janhvi Kapoor and her sister Khushi Kapoor; Kanika Kapoor, Shaan, Jaaved Jaaferi and Manish Paul have also visited the Indian pavilion recently.

Going by the current trend, it is expected that by the time the Expo 2020 concludes on March 31, 2022, the India Pavilion will certainly be among the pavilions that will see one of the highest footfalls.

Separately, India’s Minister of External Affairs Dr S Jaishankar on Saturday said there is every sign that the economy is faring well, and the growth is back and is seen not only in numbers reported by the companies, but also on the streets, in spirit.

Dr Jaishankar was addressing media at the India Pavilion at Expo 2020 and commended the efforts which led to 3 lakh footfalls in the pavilion in 43 days, since its inauguration by Minister of Commerce & Industry, Consumer Affairs & Food & Public Distribution and Textiles, Shri Piyush Goyal.

There are two parallel processes going on simultaneously, he said, “One is the recovery from COVID and the other is the recovery of the economy. Both are showing resilience in different forms. In terms of lives and livelihoods, the next few months and years will really show who has been more resilient and who has perhaps not been that much. In India, we have crossed 1.1 billion shots. The pace is continuing and there has been confidence that in the next few weeks, all the eligible people will get two shots. It will leave us in a good shape to tackle any future mis-happenings that may take place,” said Dr Jaishankar.

 “Then, there is every sign that the economy is faring well. The growth is not only back in numbers seen in company reporting, but also on the streets in terms of spirit. I would say we are well poised and part of the reason why we are well poised is that a lot of effort was made in creating the capacities to handle COVID  — hospitals, ventilators and even the vaccination. Part of it is also because of the resilience and foresight with which we responded,” he added.  “We husbanded our resources well and reacted in the balanced and right manner.

We recovered and at the same time we recovered in a very responsible manner. So, that creates a fair degree of confidence and optimism in India as we look into 2022. I would certainly hope that in a country like UAE, which is a great friend, it will certainly get reflected. And this is already getting reflected in our trade figures. This year, may actually be one of our best years in trade. Trade recovery has been very strong and we don’t think that it is just because of pent up demand. The recovery remains very strong,” said Dr Jaishankar.

He also visited the UAE and Israeli pavilions and said, “In many ways the Indian pavilion covers the tradition and the modernity of the country. It is challenging but that has been successfully done.

The footfalls are reflective of the good work that has been done.” Dr Jaishankar was accompanied by Ambassador of India to the UAE, Shri Pavan Kapoor and Consul General of India in Dubai, Dr Aman Puri.

On his expectations from the recent meeting of the new QUAD that includes, UAE, Israel, India and the US, he said, “It was a hybrid meeting.

Two of us were together and two of us joined virtually. We have to have a follow-up session so that we agree on exactly how we want to go forward. The follow-up meeting will be taking place in the coming weeks.”

Related articles