x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Dubai’s Expo 2020 theme ‘very concrete’, says BIE official

The emirate was the final candidate to present its theme of energy conservation, mobility, collaboration, provide drinking water and solar energy to developing countries.

Vicente Gonzalez Loscertales, the secretary general of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) says Dubai's theme “translates the very essence of a World Expo to bring together the variety of different identities and experiences
Vicente Gonzalez Loscertales, the secretary general of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) says Dubai's theme “translates the very essence of a World Expo to bring together the variety of different identities and experiences". Courtesy Expo 2020, Dubai

DUBAI // Dubai’s Expo 2020 theme reflects the spirit of the world’s fair as it centres on building partnerships to generate concrete solutions to global challenges, said the head of the event’s governing body in a recent speech.

Vicente Gonzalez Loscertales, the secretary general of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) said the bid “focuses on creating partnerships rather than links, which in turn strive to engineer sustainable, lasting solutions rather than temporary remedies to the world’s most defining challenges.”

Mr Loscertales made the comments at last week’s symposium in Dubai attended by more than 200 delegates of the body governing the world fair.

“It is therefore clear that the theme of Expo 2020 Dubai is not an abstract one,” said Mr Loscertales. “‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’ refers to three very concrete domains that shape the priorities of each country, in the past, today and for the future: mobility, sustainability and opportunity.”

The emirate was the final candidate to present its theme of energy conservation, mobility, and collaboration.

The other contenders vying to host the Expo 2020 are Turkey’s Izmir, Brazil’s Sao Paulo and Russia’s Yekaterinburg.

Mr Loscertales also pointed out the universal appeal in Turkey’s health theme, Brazil’s diversity and harmony theme and Russia’s impact of globalisation during wrap up speeches at symposiums held in the other countries over the last four months.

In Dubai, he outlined how the emirate’s theme linked visitors and participants to enable exchange of knowledge and experience.

Mr Loscertales said it “translates the very essence of a World Expo to bring together the variety of different identities and experiences. It will be the driving force in 2020 to help unravel the complexities of our interdependent world, and moreover, to help us all understand our role within it and the best way in which we can all make a contribution.”

The UAE addressed areas where global disparities remained, he said.

“By enabling access to markets, we can facilitate the movement of goods, people and ideas,” Mr Loscertales said. “By enabling access to basic resources such as energy and water, we can ensure high standards of education and quality of life. And finally, by enabling access and the development of opportunity we can develop human capital, expand access to credit, savings and investments to help build the future together.

“These three domains represent the aspirations of all nations that prioritise their path to development and prosperity: smart mobility, sustainability and new, improved economic opportunities.”

Describing Dubai’s Expo Live plan as innovative, Mr Loscertales said it sought to bring together people facing challenges.

During the three-day symposium last week, visiting delegates heard from national and international experts about the nation’s long-term initiative to transform the lives of communities in developing countries.

The seven-year Expo Live programme includes projects for affordable high-quality solar energy as part of the D Light project and the Pure Home Water initiative that will supply clay pots reinforced with a water filtering technology.

“Furthermore, in a departure from traditional norms, Expo 2020 Dubai would bring interested parties together through the innovative Expo Live; a programme that will be designed to make the Expo a centre of innovation and partnership creation,” said Mr Loscertales.

“Expo Live will bring together people with problems and challenges, those with solutions, and those that can join them to create and disseminate solutions to some of humankind’s most pressing challenges.”

The winning city will be declared after a vote by the BIE general assembly in Paris on November 27.

rtalwar@thenational.ae