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Sat 28 May 2016 12:03 AM

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Dubai Expo 2020 launches push for international support

First international planning meeting takes place to highlight benefits of participating in the World Expo

Dubai Expo 2020 launches push for international support

Expo 2020 Dubai will host its first international planning meeting, organised with the involvement of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), the governing body for World Expos.

The two-day meeting, which opened on Monday, will bring together representatives of nations from around the world, news agency WAM reported.

At the meeting, Expo 2020 Dubai will host government and diplomatic officials to highlight the benefits of participating in the World Expo, it added.

The meeting comes a month after Switzerland became the first country to officially sign up for Dubai Expo 2020.

Expo 2020 Dubai aims to host more than 180 countries. For the first time in the history of World Expos, each country will have an individual pavilion, enhancing the ability of nations to showcase themselves.

Reem bint Ibrahim Al Hashemi, Minister of State for International Cooperation and director general Bureau Expo Dubai 2020, said: "This International Planning Meeting is the first major event in an ongoing programme of international engagement.

"We are collaborating with potential participants by sharing our vision and involving them in the plans that are being delivered, in order to ensure that Expo 2020 Dubai stands out not only for its exceptional visitor experience and seamless operations, but also for its lasting legacy that benefits all."

She added: "The Expo experience starts now for our international participants. There are many opportunities for us to engage and work together to create value, both during the journey to Expo and at the event itself. We want countries to join us early in the process to maximize those opportunities." 

The IPM agenda comprises one day of high-level presentations and panel discussions, followed by hands-on workshops to immerse potential participants in the details of the Expo 2020 Dubai master plan, theme and visitor journey.

Earlier in May, Expo unveiled its master plan at the Arab Media Forum while in March, Expo 2020 Dubai revealed its new logo.

Ahead of the start of infrastructure works in July, the Expo site has seen over 4 million cubic metres of earth moved as the site has been levelled in preparation for construction.

Between October 2020 and April 2021, Expo 2020 Dubai is expected to welcome more than 180 nations and an international audience of 25 million visitors.

Expo 2020 is scheduled to be hosted by Dubai in an area next to Jebel Ali. Spanning 438,000 square metres, Dubai Expo 2020 will be 10 percent larger in size than Milan Expo 2015.

UAE officials are expecting the event to create 277,000 jobs, most of which will be in the tourism industry.

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