A tremendous footfall - GulfToday

A tremendous footfall


Visitors enjoy their day out at the Expo 2020 Dubai. Photos: Kamal Kassim, Gulf Today

Expo 2020 Dubai has announced its latest visitor numbers, with an incredible 3,578,653 individual visits achieved by November’s half-way point, only six weeks into Expo’s six-month run. Virtual visitation also rose to 15.7 million since 1st October.

The announcement comes after a packed weekend at the site, with stellar music, sport and cultural performances taking place.

And more is on the way. Expo’s fourth Theme Week, with debates and panel discussions centred around Tolerance and Inclusivity, got under way on Sunday, and will feature talent and performances from a range of cultures and backgrounds.

The highlight is Expo’s all-female Firdaus Orchestra, which will perform music from world cinema and TV on International Day for Tolerance on 16th November, and take to the stage again on World Children’s Day on 20th November in a show that will encourage children to explore, thrive and connect with musical pieces they know and love, such as classics from Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin.

Expo 2020 Dubai runs until 31st March 2022, inviting the world to join a celebration of unity, opportunity, creativity and sustainability that will help to shape a better, brighter future for everyone.

Separately, Lt. General Sheikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, has met with Sergej Sekulovic, Minister of Interior of Montenegro and his accompanying delegation.

During the meeting, they discussed ways to enhance ties between the UAE and Montenegro in the security and policing fields and way to boost ties between the two sides.

Sheikh Saif Bin Zayed and Sekulovic exchanged views on the role of Expo 2020 Dubai to develop global dialogue, convergence of views and achieve communication among the peoples of the world, as an event that promotes for creativity, innovation, human progress and culture. A number of senior police officers attended the meeting.

A gateway to growth: Brazilian micro and small business see significant opportunities in the UAE and regard the country as a gateway to the broader MENA region, executives from Sebrae, the Brazilian micro and small business support service, told a Brazilian business event in Dubai. Sebrae took part in the Brazil-United Arab Emirates Prospective Business Mission on November 14 and 15 as part of its efforts to cultivate opportunities for Brazilian companies in the UAE.

Owners of micro and small Brazilian companies will also participate in various activities during the six-months of expo 2020 Dubai. Sebrae, in partnership with other Brazilian government entities, are bringing entrepreneurs with export potential from the states of Paraná, São Paulo, Minas Gerais, Pará, Ceará, Rondônia and Tocantins to the event to introduce them to the regional market.

At the opening of the “How to do business with the United Arab Emirates” seminar of the Brazil-United Arab Emirates Prospective Business Mission, Sebrae president, Carlos Melles, reiterated the potential of Brazil’s small businesses to serve the UAE and MENA.

He said Sebrae has a fundamental role in expanding the number and value of exports by small businesses, training entrepreneurs, and ensuring that their products and services adhere to international standards. “We are preparing Brazilian companies for internationalization, increasing the amount of exporting business and the value being traded,” said Melles.

Melles pointed out that expo 2020 in Dubai will enhance Brazilian firms’ understanding of the MENA market, thanks to Dubai’s position as the region’s principal trading hub. “There is a wide variety of opportunities, and expo 2020 is an ideal platform for attracting partnerships and investors. I believe our efforts will open a huge market for our micro and small companies,” he adds.

Brazil’s 18.2 million micro and small companies account for 99 per cent of businesses in the country and were responsible for 70 per cent of the jobs created since the beginning of this year. Altogether, they generate annual revenues worth an estimated $880,000 and 30 per cent of national GDP.

While the Middle East already imports significant amounts of Brazilian açaí and cosmetics, Sebrae believes tourism services and technologies related to the energy sector have particularly strong growth potential.

The value of Brazilian exports to the region grew from $8.8 billion in 2020 to $12.27 billion this year. According to Sebrae, micro and small business were responsible for at least 40 per cent of this trade.

“We believe there is enormous potential in the region, and this potential can be transformed into concrete opportunities,” said Eduardo Diogo, Sebrae’s Director of Administration and Finance.

Diogo said there were also opportunities for information sharing between UAE and Brazil entrepreneurs around sustainability and mobility, two of the three expo 2020 themes. “Brazil has a very close relationship with nature, and sustainability is crucial for us as a nation. Mobility is also a challenge for all the big cities globally, such as San Paulo, which has almost 20 million residents. So, the transport sector can benefit greatly from the insights gathered at the expo,” Diogo said

Sebrae has developed partnerships in different Brazilian states and signed agreements with bodies such as the Brazilian export and Investment Promotion Agency (Apex-Brazil) and the National Confederation of Industry (CNI). These networks offer small businesses an ideal opportunity to boost their participation in the export market, in addition to assisting entrepreneurs in aligning their products to global standards.

Recently, Sebrae and CNI launched a joint study that identified the main markets with export potential and their buyers. These include clothing, food products, canned fruits, vegetables, furniture, soaps, detergents, cleaning products, cosmetics, perfumery, and personal care products. The report identified 50 sectors with significant export potential throughout all the states in Brazil.

Shanxi Week: The Shanxi Week was held at Expo 2020 Dubai between the 8th - 10th of November 2021. With the theme “Opportunity, Innovation and Cooperation”, the three-day event featured both on-site exchanges and visits as well as online activities of cultural and tourism promotion, exhibition, business matching and investment promotion.

Four major events took place throughout the week including the opening ceremony, Shanxi (China) Cloud Promotion on Energy Revolution and Innovation Cooperation (Dubai), the online show, and the Shanxi Local Brands Cloud Exhibition. The activities narrated the story of Shanxi, showcasing how Shanxi has promoted green transition in its economic and social development and how it has contributed to building “a community with a shared future for mankind”.

The Shanxi Week was unveiled simultaneously at the main venue in the provincial capital Taiyuan, the Dubai venue and via the webcast on the 8th of November.

At the opening ceremony, He Tiancai, Vice Governor of Shanxi Province, delivered a speech on behalf of the Shanxi Provincial Party Committee and the Provincial Government. Recorded video speeches of Ali Al Dhaheri, UAE Ambassador to China, Najeeb Al-Ali, Executive Director of the Dubai World Expo Bureau, Hamad Al Ali, Member of the “Hala China” Executive Committee, and Chen Jian’an, Vice Chairman of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade were also played at the opening ceremony. In his remarks, He Tiancai, Vice Governor of Shanxi Province said that the Expo has become a grand event to showcase the progress of human civilization and to facilitate exchanges and mutual learning among civilizations. The Shanxi Week is a concrete step for Shanxi, the first pilot province for comprehensive energy reform in China, to implement the important consensus reached by president Xi Jinping and the UAE leadership to promote comprehensive and in-depth exchanges and cooperation in the energy field between Shanxi and the Middle East countries, including the UAE, and other countries in the world.

A promotional video of Shanxi was played at the opening ceremony, showcasing the charm of the province. A cloud tour of the China Pavilion at the Expo was also held, offering a visual and immersive experience for those who cannot visit the Expo in person.

After the opening ceremony, the Shanxi (China) Cloud Promotion on Energy Revolution and Innovation Cooperation (Dubai) was held where four enterprises presented including Jinneng Holding Power Group, Huayang New Material Technology Group Co., Ltd., Taiyuan Heavy Machinery Group Co., Ltd., and State Grid Shanxi Electric Power Company. Their presentations covered five application scenarios of heterojunction technology, high-efficiency photovoltaic product manufacturing, new materials, wind power and big data.

Furthermore, on the 8th of November, the month-long Shanxi Local Brands Cloud Exhibition was also launched on the “Trade Promotion Cloud Exhibition” platform, which aims to help Shanxi local brands explore potential business partners from the Middle East countries, including the UAE through product display, supply and demand matching, online communication and negotiation. 117 Shanxi companies specializing in intangible cultural heritage innovation, biomedicine, clean energy, and equipment manufacturing attended the Cloud Exhibition, including State Grid Shanxi Electric Power Company, Taiyuan Heavy Machinery Group Co., Ltd., and Jinneng Holding Power Group.

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