World can expect exceptional Expo ’20 - GulfToday

World can expect exceptional Expo ’20


An Expo 2020 Dubai billboard is seen in Dubai.

With 192 countries announcing their participation, Expo 2020 Dubai is set to become the most inclusive international Expo ever to be organised.

For more than 170 years, World Expos have been apolitical events focused on furthering humanity for the common good through innovation, cultural exchange, creativity and collaboration. In line with that tradition, organisers of the mega event have rightly invited all countries without exception.

As Vicente G Loscertales, head of the Paris-based Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), pointed out, “By inviting all countries of the world to take part, the organisers of Expo 2020 are genuinely reflecting the universal spirit of World Expos.”

Since being named the host of World Expo 2020, the leadership has left no stone unturned to make the event extraordinary, especially since it will be the first to be staged in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia region in the 168-year history of the event.

Whatever Dubai does, it does so with a touch of class. No wonder, the event is expected to attract a larger number of visitors compared to the previous edition. Expo 2020, which runs from Oct.20 next year to April 20, 2021, is set to attract some 25 million visitors. In comparison, the Expo 2015 in Milan attracted over 21 million, according to BIE.

Dubai’s government has already spent over $40 billion on major infrastructure projects related to the Expo, including a new $2.9-billion metro line and an expansion to a new airport near the Expo site.

The benefits will be immense. Expo 2020 Dubai’s long-term investment in the future of the country will boost its economy by Dhs122.6 billion and support 905,200 job-years between 2013 and 2031, an independent report published by global consultancy EY shows.

During the peak six-month period of the World Expo, the largest event to be held in the Arab World is predicted to add the equivalent of 1.5 per cent to UAE Gross Domestic Product.

The scale of investment pouring in to construct and host an event of this ambition, as well as goods and services consumed by the millions expected to visit and the businesses that will occupy the Expo site in the legacy phase, will result in an economic dividend that will benefit businesses large and small across a range of sectors for years, as per the report.

On another front, the Dubai Exhibition Centre, DEC, will open for business on Oct.20, 2020, offering Expo 2020 Dubai participants, partners, government entities, industry associations and event organisers access to a global stage for the six-month duration of the world’s largest meeting of minds and building on an already thriving exhibition and conferences sector in the UAE.

A new 3D animated fly-through shows a world-class venue comprising 45,000 square metres of space spread across two campuses, housing a theatre, auditorium, several multi-purpose halls, four suites and 24 meeting rooms, and customisable to all event needs, including large indoor concerts.

Every aspect is being taken care of. For example, on the environment front, water conservation is top of mind at Expo 2020 Dubai, with a ‘smart site’, clever irrigation methods and thoughtful use of native and adaptive plant species combining to ensure it is one of the most water-efficient World Expos ever.

Expo 2020 Dubai will thus certainly be a global celebration.

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