‘Con­nect­ing Minds, Cre­at­ing the Fu­ture’

Dubai is the first Mid­dle East­ern lo­ca­tion to be cho­sen for the World Expo Trade Con­ven­tion in 2020. This is a win that will fur­ther add to the UAE’s pas­sion to bring peo­ple to­gether for busi­ness and plea­sure.

Southasia - - COVER STORY -

Asense of ju­bi­la­tion went through the UAE as news came from Paris that Dubai has been cho­sen as the venue for the World Expo Trade Con­ven­tion in 2020. It was celebration all round. Peo­ple just came out and danced in the streets to re­joice and make a big noise about the his­toric win which had beaten ri­vals Brazil, Tur­key and Rus­sia. Fire­works ex­ploded from the Burj Khal­ifa, the world's tallest build­ing, fol­low­ing the an­nounce­ment. The Dubai Crown Prince, Sh. Ham­dan bin Rashid al-Mak­toum, even scaled the top of the Burj Al Khal­ifa and un­furled the UAE flag to mark the celebration.

Dubai will be the first Mid­dle East­ern city to hold the Expo, which takes place ev­ery five years.

Coun­tries show off all that they have to of­fer at the Expo – busi­ness prospects, in­dus­try, tourism, ar­chi­tec­ture and tech­nol­ogy.

Happy in the win, the ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mo­hammed Bin Rashid al-Mak­toum promised to as­ton­ish the world with the event when it takes place in Dubai in 2020.

"Dubai Expo 2020 will breathe new life into the an­cient role of the Mid­dle East as a melt­ing pot for cul­tures and cre­ativ­ity," he said.

“I ex­tend my thanks to HH Sheikh Khal­ifa (the pres­i­dent of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi) for his great sup­port, and to ev­ery coun­try that voted for Dubai to host Expo 2020,” Sh. Mo­ham­mad said.

He ex­pressed his grat­i­tude to the peo­ple of the UAE and thanked them for their sup­port and en­thu­si­asm which fu­elled the vic­tory.

“To­day, you are all cham­pi­ons,” he said.

Sh. Mo­ham­mad also thanked all the Arab coun­tries for their heart­felt en­cour­age­ment and said that they all shared the his­toric mo­ment for the re­gion. He praised the Dubai 2020 bid com­mit­tee for all their hard work and said he was proud of the team that had earned this vic­tory for Dubai with two years of hard work, ded­i­ca­tion and com­mit­ment.

In a state­ment, UAE Pres­i­dent Sheikh Khal­ifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan also re­it­er­ated his ear­lier re­marks that “Dubai Expo 2020 will un­doubt­edly stand out as the best edi­tion in the his­tory of the event in terms of prepa­ra­tion and pre­sen­ta­tion.”

In a tele­phone con­ver­sa­tion with Sheikh Mo­hammed, Sheikh Khal­ifa said: “From day one when we sub­mit­ted our bid to host Expo 2020, we were fully con­fi­dent that Dubai de­serves to win the bid, and that our coun­try pos­sesses all it takes to suc­cess­fully or­ga­nize a unique event that will add a new and out­stand­ing im­print on the Expo se­ries of events.”

The chair­man of Dubai’s Expo 2020 Bid Com­mit­tee, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Mak­toum, who is also chair­man and CEO of the Emi­rates Group, said: “We are im­mensely proud to have been awarded the hon­our of host­ing World Expo 2020.

“The com­pe­ti­tion has been fierce and we re­spect­fully com­mend our com­peti­tors,” he said. “This is a mo­ment to be em­braced and owned by the en­tire na­tion and be­yond – this is your Expo. It is an Expo for the World. The vi­sion of our bid has al­ways been about more than just Dubai and the UAE.”

Ac­cord­ing to Dubai au­thor­i­ties, Expo 2020 will rake in around $23bn. Fi­nanc­ing for the six-month event will cost a to­tal of $8.4bn, with the gov­ern­ment spend­ing around $6.5bn on in­fra­struc­ture projects. A huge ex­hi­bi­tion cen­tre will be built in Dubai to host the event, plus new ho­tels and an ex­ten­sion to Dubai's metro line.

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