2020 Expo Dubai : Countdown starts to the world’s greatest show.

2020 Expo Dubai : Countdown starts to the world’s greatest show.

With exactly one year to go, all eyes are set on Dubai, UAE which is gearing up to host the world’s greatest show and the city’s most-anticipated project – The Dubai 2020 Expo. Expo 2020 Dubai will host the world for 173 days from 20 October 2020 to 10 April 2021. The core theme of this expo is “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future” aimed at providing a providing a platform to foster creativity, innovation, and collaboration globally. It’s the world’s first-ever Expo to take place in the Middle East region, marking a break from the usual run of European, North American and Asian hosts and interestingly coincides with the UAE’s 50th anniversary in 2021. 

Brief History of the World Expo

World Expos, officially known as International Registered Exhibitions are regulated and overseen by The Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), a Paris based intergovernmental organization. According to BIE, World Expos are a global gathering of nations dedicated to finding solutions to pressing challenges of our time by offering a journey inside a universal theme through engaging and immersive activities. The concept of world expo was originated from the Great Exhibition which took place in London in 1851.  The last expo was hosted by Milan, Italy in 2015 with the theme ‘Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life’.

The 2020 Expo Dubai

The opportunity to host the expo was awarded to Dubai in 2013 and the physical site development began in March 2016. The total budget for the Expo 2020 Dubai is planned at AED 33 billion. Approximately 70 percent of the overall budget, AED25 billion ($6.8 billion) is invested in urban developments and infrastructure projects. The Expo is expected to contribute 2.5% of Dubai’s GDP and has a long term economic benefit of around AED 122 Billion from its activities.

What can you expect at the Dubai 2020 Expo?

The latest edition of the Expo will work towards enabling new Opportunities for individuals and communities to help them achieve their needs and inspire them to pursue their future aspirations. Over the course of 6 months, the ambitious Gulf city has set a target of attracting 25 million visits to the Expo. This includes the 11 million UAE residents and 14 million overseas tourists.

The Expo 2020 Dubai will create history with 192 countries participating and each of them having an opportunity to showcase their latest technology. Many of the countries have already announced their top exhibition themes already. For eg: Belgium’s country pavilion will focus on renewable resources to meet its energy needs and thereby promising to produce more energy than it consumes. 

For the leisure traveler, the Expo 2020 Dubai site will have 14 entertainment venues, 80+ art installations, and will feature more than 200 Food and Beverage outlets serving more than 50 cuisines.

How can the business community seize the opportunity?

Global rating agency, S&P expects Dubai’s GDP to grow by about 2.5 percent a year between 2019 and 2022 with much of the increase coming from economic activity associated with Expo 2020. Further, it will help boost the position of Dubai and the UAE as a global investment destination, with the UAE ranked top in the region in attracting FDI inflows.

Big Boost to the SME Sector: The global online marketplace launched in 2018 as part of the expo has more than 26000 registered suppliers from across the world and more than three fourth of them are SMEs. Almost 60 percent of the 5600 contracts and deals signed as a part of the expo went to SMEs. It is estimated that SMEs will receive AED 4.7 billion in investment during the pre-Expo phase, creating 12,600 job-years and in line with Expo 2020’s goal to foster innovation and support small businesses. Printing, packaging, advertising, travel agency businesses are also expected to have a phenomenal demand during the expo. 

Long Term Benefits: The hospitality, F&B, construction, transportation, event organizing, and business services industry are expected to reap the highest business benefits from the expo. Post the expo, the real estate sector is also expected to recover fast with increased demands and more investments.

With exactly a year to go, UAE has already started showcasing the excitement to the world. Various events are conducted across all the Emirates marking the one year count down to World’s Greatest Show – Expo 2020 Dubai. 

Mohammad Nibras

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