India to have key strategic pavilion at Dubai Expo 2020, says UAE envoy

The Indian pavilion is crucial, both in terms of location and size, for the expo that is expected to draw 25 million visitors, United Arab Emirates (UAE) ambassador Ahmed AlBanna told a media briefing.
Dubai Expo India (AP)
Dubai Expo India (AP)
Updated on Sep 17, 2021 03:11 AM IST
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By HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

India will have one of the most strategic pavilions at the Dubai Expo 2020, which will aim to foster solutions for the world’s biggest challenges, United Arab Emirates (UAE) ambassador Ahmed AlBanna said on Thursday.

The Indian pavilion is crucial, both in terms of location and size, for the expo that is expected to draw 25 million visitors, the envoy told a media briefing. Each Indian state will be given an opportunity to showcase its economy and culture at the pavilion.

The expo, which was postponed for a year because of the Covid-19 pandemic, will begin on October 1 and run till March 31, 2022. The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci) will supervise the Indian pavilion, which will be retained and run by the Indian government even after the expo.

The theme for the expo is “Connecting minds, creating the future”, and the event has the subthemes of opportunity, mobility and sustainability. The subthemes are aimed at unlocking the potential of communities to shape the future, creating smarter and more productive movement of people, goods and ideas, and living in balance with the world.

AlBanna said the UAE eased Covid-19-related travel restrictions on all Indian nationals holding visit, tourist or work visas about two weeks ago. A mechanism has also been created for expediting the issuance of visas of all categories, he said.

The envoy highlighted the importance of cooperation between India and the UAE in key sectors such as IT, education and health care for shaping the future of both countries. These factors are also important to create the right workforce in the aftermath of the pandemic, he said.

AlBanna said the expo will also boost a key goal of the UAE and India – boosting the traditional people-to-people interactions between the two countries.

Ficci secretary general Dilip Chenoy said India will have a strong participation in the 11 theme weeks of the expo that will focus on urban development, water, space, tolerance and inclusivity, climate and biodiversity, and health.

AlBanna said Indian leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, have made a strong commitment to the success of the expo. Modi conveyed his best wishes for the expo during a phone conversation with UAE Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Two-time Oscar-winning composer AR Rahman will mentor and creatively lead the Firdaus Women’s Orchestra and put his name to a studio at the expo site. The studio will remain post the event to boost Dubai’s credentials as an international music hub.

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Sunday, October 24, 2021