The successful face-to-face gathering of more than 370 delegates ahead of Expo 2020’s opening in October shows the next World Expo is set to become one of Dubai’s greatest success stories – a global experience that will demonstrate the emirate’s confidence, safety and openness to all visitors and further boost its thriving leisure and business tourism industries.
Speaking after the two-day International Participants Meeting (IPM), which welcomed delegates from 173 of Expo’s 190-plus participating countries, Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General, Expo 2020 Dubai and His Excellency Helal Saeed Al Marri, Director General of Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), Director General of Dubai World Trade Centre Authority and member of the Expo 2020 Dubai Higher Committee praised Dubai’s confidence and vision and its unwavering commitment to host the next World Expo, with Expo and DTCM working closely to create an Expo that would excite and inspire visitors from all around the world.
Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, said: “Since the planning stages, we have worked hand-in-hand with DTCM to deliver an Expo that will attract visitors from across the planet and make Dubai and the UAE proud. As the world changed, we too have adapted, and thanks to our collaboration with DTCM, we have created an Expo that will delight and inspire explorers and entrepreneurs, children and grandparents, casual tourists and the curious who want to experience the future – now.”
His Excellency Al Marri said: “Since inception, Dubai has exemplified what it means to succeed against all odds, rising with dignity and determination to become an economic engine and a vibrant hub for travellers from all over the world. Setting new benchmarks is engrained in our ethos, and to this end, we see Expo 2020 Dubai as a global pivot given where we all are today.
“No one could have anticipated how COVID-19 would alter our realities so definitively, and yet, like the rest of the world, Dubai and Expo 2020 paused, reflected and persevered through unprecedented challenges, with our innate indomitable spirit, to re-emerge stronger and more optimistic for our collective future.”
Implementing a phased economic reopening, Dubai began welcoming tourists once again in July 2020 – when the city’s first in-person, post-lockdown event was held – and has since remained open to the world, reinforcing the renewed need for global business and leisure travel.
His Excellency added: “Dubai has successfully deployed its phased economic reopening that prioritised safety while minimising the impacts of the pandemic – an approach that sees us well-positioned to lead a post-pandemic recovery. As a thriving tourist destination and a global centre for the meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) sector, we look forward to welcoming more of the world’s business and leisure travellers to Dubai over the coming months.
“The new Dubai Exhibition Centre (DEC), Expo 2020 Dubai, which hosted its inaugural event at the recent meeting of Expo’s international participants, will be a signature venue during Expo 2020 and through its legacy, providing new-age connectivity and networking opportunities for a global audience, catalysing industry, business and markets and driving economic growth in our region and the world.”
Testament to Dubai’s future-focused strategies, Expo 2020 Dubai will galvanise the region’s thriving tourism and events industries, and DEC – a 45,000 sqm, state-of-the-art, multipurpose venue that is already 80 per cent booked for the duration of Expo – will play a fundamental role in attracting domestic, international and business travellers.
A significant symbol of Expo’s long-term business and tourism legacy, DEC is among the permanent buildings that will be retained after Expo 2020 closes its doors, forming part of District 2020, a new urban innovation ecosystem and model global community of the future.
Running from 1 October 2021 until 31 March 2022, Expo 2020 will coincide with the 50-year anniversary of the founding of the UAE, and highlight the country’s role as a global connecting hub for people, ideas and innovation. Visitors from across the globe are invited to join the making of a new world, as they discover life-changing innovations that will have a meaningful, positive impact on both people and planet.