Australia will promote its culture and innovative spirit to a global audience of millions after confirming its participation at the first World Expo in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia, MEASA, region.
The country's participation was confirmed by Arthur Spyrou, Australian Ambassador to the UAE, to Reem Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director-General, Dubai Expo 2020 Bureau.
Australia's participation at Expo 2020 Dubai underlines its close links with the UAE in areas including tourism, education and business. Expo will provide the country with a global stage to showcase its culture, ingenuity and innovation, as well as highlighting the quality of its service, agriculture and education sectors.
Expo 2020 will also enable the country to strengthen trade and two-way investment with nations from around the world, and help Australian companies to capitalise on opportunities in the UAE and wider region before, during and after Expo.
Australia will have the opportunity to present itself as a secure destination for business and investment, and the country is already benefitting from Expo 2020 Dubai through Australian companies winning Expo-related contracts.
Speaking on the occasion, Reem Al Hashimy said, "Expo 2020 Dubai will be a celebration of ingenuity and collaboration between nations from around the world that will have a lasting impact on human progress.
"Australia and the UAE already enjoy a close relationship, so we are delighted to welcome our friends to Expo 2020 and look forward to seeing the positive contribution that their participation will bring."
World Expos, which date back to the 1851 Great Exhibition in London, have always celebrated the latest in innovation and technology.
Through its overall theme, 'Connecting Minds, Creating the Future', Expo 2020 will be a platform to foster creativity, innovation and collaboration globally, giving millions of visitors a glimpse into the future, guided by its three pillars: Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability.
The Australian Ambassador said, "Australia is a longstanding friend and partner of the UAE, and we are proud to have played a part in the Dubai success story so far, while intending to play a positive role in its future.
"Australia supported the UAE's bid to host Expo 2020 Dubai and our participation reflects the value we place in our relationship with the UAE, as well as Dubai's status as a global hub for business, transport, tourism and logistics."
Australia and the UAE already share strong bilateral relations, with the UAE being Australia's largest trade and investment partner in the Middle East. In 2016, non-oil trade between the two nations reached AED10.4 billion (USD 2.8 billion).
Nearly 25,000 Australian expatriates and 350 Australian companies are based in the UAE, with more than 130 flights per week connecting both nations and driving tourism. Last year, about 279,000 Australian tourists visited Dubai.
Expo 2020 Dubai will run for six months from 20th October, 2020 to 10th April, 2021 and is expected to record 25 million visits, with 70 percent anticipated to come from outside the UAE. It aims to bring together 180 countries, and 170 nations have already either publically or privately confirmed their participation at Expo.
Source: UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs