The Expo 2020 and the private sector: a match made in heaven

Published April 22nd, 2015 - 08:31 GMT
Oxford Economics, in another report, also suggested 277,149 jobs will be created in the next seven years (image: on file)
Oxford Economics, in another report, also suggested 277,149 jobs will be created in the next seven years (image: on file)

His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, said this during his visit to the planned site of the mega expo in Jebel Ali on Tuesday, where the Dubai government invited nearly 300 chief executive officers of Arab and foreign companies.

Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and Shaikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, also attended the gathering hosted by the Dubai Expo 2020 Higher Committee at the site.

The meeting was held under the theme “Expanding prospects of opportunities”.

“I am present today at the Expo 2020 building site to have a meeting with the international and regional companies to discuss setting up effective partnerships, with the aim of making the global event a success. Today, we have laid down our executive plans until 2020, which carry big opportunities for private sector,” Shaikh Mohammed said.

Shaikh Mohammed expressed delight at the meeting, which aimed at briefing an elite of CEOs of national and international companies and leaders of the business and finance community about the objectives of the UAE hosting the Dubai Expo.

During this gathering, he said participants shared constructive ideas and proposals which could produce a common vision that portrays the civilised and human image of “our State and beloved people” and achieve the event’s goals: to stimulate local and global economies and create job opportunities through the mega projects that will be undertaken in Dubai and the UAE for Expo 2020.

It is estimated that Dubai authorities will invest more than Dh30 billion in new infrastructure including road network to the expo site and metro link as well. The mega exhibition would increase Dubai’s economic growth by 0.5 percentage points per year and two percentage points in 2020, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch report.

Oxford Economics, in another report, also suggested 277,149 jobs will be created in the next seven years — with nine-tenths coming in the final three years as a result of the extra demand from the 25 million expected Expo visitors.

Shaikh Mohammed watched a presentation on the evolution of Dubai under his reign as a cosmopolitan city. The documentary also depicted the moment of great joy that swept across the diverse UAE community when the Bureau International des Expositions, in November 2013, announced the UAE as winner of the bid to host World Expo 2020 in Dubai.

Reem Al Hashemi, Minister of State and managing director of Expo 2020 Higher Committee, outlined the vision of Shaikh Mohammed for the future of the UAE as the host of Expo 2020 and his close follow up of meetings of the executive bureau and general assembly of the BIE in Paris and his personal attendance of these meetings to provide support that enabled the UAE to win the bid to host the world’s largest exhibition, which will be a landmark exhibition and event not only for the UAE and its people, but also for more than two billion people in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

Al Hashemi has urged leaders of the business and finance community as well as national and international companies operating in the UAE to engage in shaping the future and sharing ideas and thoughts that could contribute to the success of the international gathering, which is projected to welcome 25 million visitors from across the world.

“Dubai Expo 2020 Higher Committee will consider all opinions, ideas and proposals it received from experts and businessmen seriously and subject these to thorough discussions and close follow up until all these ideas are crystallised and galvanised into reality so as to make Dubai Expo the most successful, significant and vibrant event ever held in the history of the World Expo, which is held every five years,” she said.

The meeting was attended by Shaikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Expo 2020 Higher Committee, President of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman of Emirates airline and Chief Executive of the Emirates Group; Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation; Shaikh Sultan bin Tahnoun Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority and member of the committee; Mohammed Ibrahim Al Shaibani, Director-General of the Dubai Ruler’s Court and member of the committee; Lt-General Misbah Rashid Al Fattan, Director of the Office of the Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE; Khalifa Saeed Sulaiman, Director-General of Dubai’s Protocol Department; Saeed Humaid Al Tayer, Chairman and CEO of Meydan; and other members of the committee.

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