Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 28 May 2020

Expo 2020: the silver lining to deferring it and the opportunities that await

Our readers have their say about Expo 2020, India's daily wage workers struggling to get home to their villages, and vitamin D doses during Covid-19

The Expo 2020 site as seen in January 2020. Pawan Singh / The National
The Expo 2020 site as seen in January 2020. Pawan Singh / The National

Expo 2021: the silver lining and the opportunity

Regarding Ramola Talwar Badam's report Coronavirus: Expo 2020 Dubai organisers explore postponing until 2021 (March 30): the recent announcement by the Expo 2020 Steering Committee to explore with the BIE – the World Expo governing body – a postponement of Expo until 2021 underlined the exceptional times that we, as a global community, find ourselves in. Despite this there is a possible silver lining.

Opportunity is one of the main themes of Expo. We have to explore the opportunity Expo will have for Dubai, and the rest of the world in the post-Covid-19 world. Because of the lasting economic ramifications, Expo 2020 (or 2021) will essentially become a reflection of not only Dubai, but the global community.

The World Expo is a forum to showcase the best of what the world has to offer. It stands to reason that the Dubai Expo will now become a catalyst for global recovery, and when the time comes for us to finally see what the world has to offer, it will be a beacon of light towards development and progress.

Khalifa AlQaz, Dubai

Spare a thought for India's millions of daily wage workers

In regard to the article Prime Minister Narendra Modi apologises to Indians for lockdown hardships (March 29): due to the lockdown, millions of daily wage workers are trekking 200 to 300 kilometres from large cities like Delhi back to their villages. They have no money, having lost their jobs, and are hungry. Local authorities should persuade them to break their journeys, house them in vacant local schools or hostels and provide them with food and the basics. They should also give them some living allowances. This will help them to survive the current crisis and save them the trouble of trudging back under the increasing hot weather on foot to their villages.

Rajendra Aneja, Dubai

Get your vitamin D even during the pandemic

With respect to Selina Denman's piece Eggs, bread and ripe bananas: What foods can you – and which shouldn't you – freeze? (March 26): vitamin D can help prevent respiratory tract infections so it is important to have good vitamin D levels during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, with social distancing, we may be uncertain as to how to get enough vitamin D. Spending time in a garden or balcony or by a well-lit window may be an option for those who have been advised not to leave their home environment.

We can also get vitamin D from our diet and from vitamin D supplements. With stocks depleted in supermarkets, it may not always be easy to get the full choice of vitamin D-containing foods, such as oily fish, eggs, vitamin D fortified plant-based milk alternatives, vitamin D-fortified breakfast cereals and mushrooms. Although these items are still relatively low in vitamin D, they can be helpful when available.

Avoid taking high dose vitamin D supplements as vitamin D can be toxic in relatively large amounts.

Dr Andrea Darling and Professor Susan Lanham-New, the University of Surrey, UK

Updated: March 31, 2020 06:23 PM

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