His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Higher Committee of Expo 2020 Dubai, inaugurated the UAE pavilion at Expo 2017 Astana today (Saturday, June 10, 2017).
H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum was accompanied by H.E Dr Sultan Ahmad Al Jaber, Minister of State and Chairman of the National Media Council (NMC), the government entity organising, managing and supervising the country's pavilion, in addition to H.E Dr Mohamed Al Jaber, UAE Ambassador to Kazakhstan, H.E. Mansour Al Mansouri, Director General of the National Media Council (NMC), and H.E Kairat Lama Sharif, Ambassador of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the UAE.
The UAE Pavilion represents an interactive platform which enables visitors to gain key insights into the UAE's vast development and pioneering role in shaping the future of renewable energy. Furthermore, the pavilion introduces and acquaints visitors with the UAE's culture, lifestyle and openness to the world. Through its rich and diverse features and content, the Pavilion reflects the country's strategy for diversifying energy resources while shedding light on the country's global partnerships and projects in the field of renewable energy.
His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said: "The UAE's participation in Expo 2017 Astana holds great significance for the UAE as it paves the way to the hosting of Expo 2020 Dubai. As the first expo to be held in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia, the 2020 event is not only a source of pride for all Emiratis and expats, but a testament to the country's achievements and its ambitious future aspirations."
His Highness also commended the large role that Emirati youth volunteers have in operating the UAE Pavilion as they prepare for the highly anticipated Expo 2020 Dubai.
H.E. Dr Sultan Ahmad Al Jaber said: "The National Media Council has actively cooperated with all involved government entities to streamline efforts and ensure that the country's Pavilion showcases the UAE's success in maintaining its rich cultural heritage and values and its accomplishments across multiple fronts, guided by our wise leadership."
H.E Al Jaber added that "The Pavilion enables visitors to gain insights into how the UAE has built strong cooperation ties with the international community in various areas and fields. It underlines our country's key pillars and future-oriented approach to provide future generations with the necessary resources and enablers, setting the foundations for sustainability and stability."
H.E Al Jaber highlighted that sustainable development is a key pillar of the UAE's future developmental outlook particularly in light of the vast development that the country is witnessing across multiple areas, which is the result of our leadership's vision and efforts to build a progressive and modern country that provides its people with all required services and enablers.
H.E Al Jaber went on to say that the UAE pavilion is an ideal platform to showcase the country's national achievements which includes a wide range of initiatives, solutions and projects that have been designed to achieve energy security while integrating socio-economic development and technological and knowledge advancement.
His Excellency Al Jaber said that the NMC is looking forward to communicating the UAE's pioneering experiences at Expo 2017 Astana while effectively promoting the hosting of Expo 2020 in Dubai.
"The content and features of Expo 2020 Dubai will reflect its theme; "Connecting Minds, Creating the Future" as we look forward to building momentum at Expo 2017 Astana and utilize its positive energy in Expo 2020 Dubai through the UAE's principles of cooperation and partnership to build a better future around the world."
Al Jaber concluded by saying that Expo 2020 Dubai will be a testament to the unprecedented progress that the UAE has achieved in the last 40 years, and will serve as an ideal platform for the international community to come together to discover new innovative solutions and opportunities in the fields of sustainability and transportation to achieve economic prosperity. As a true catalyst for positive change, Expo 2020 Dubai will also enable participants to exchange knowledge and expertise while drawing in investments, commercial deals and tourism.
The Design of the UAE Pavilion
Inspired by the dunes of the Emirati Liwa desert, visitors to the UAE pavilion are greeted by the words of H.H. the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Founding Father of the UAE, against a backdrop image of the Abu Dhabi skyline. The quote reads: "No matter how many buildings, foundations, schools and hospitals we build, or how many bridges we raise, all these are material entities. The real spirit behind the progress is the human spirit, the able man with his intellect and capabilities."
The interior walls are illuminated by projections of videos that showcase the future and strategy of the UAE in the energy sector, in addition to large-scale national projects such as the Mohammed Bin Rashid Solar Park which is being developed by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA). The project is the largest single-site solar park in the world with a total planned capacity of 5,000 megawatts when completed in 2030. The Pavilion also showcases Masdar's range of offerings in the field of renewable energy though its $8.5 billion investments in clean energy projects across the Middle East, North Africa and Western Europe, with a total capacity to generate 2.7 gigawatts of electricity.
In addition, the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) was established in the UAE and will generate up to 25% of the UAE's electricity while reducing its carbon footprint by nearly 12 million tons annually.
Bridging generations, visitors at the UAE pavilion can also explore the past, present, and future of the UAE's energy and sustainability sectors through a creative 270-degree wrap-around film. Emphasis is placed on the sustainability legacy and environmental stewardship of the UAE through innovation and advanced technologies.
Covering more than 980 sqm, the UAE Pavilion is the largest at Expo 2017 Astana and has been designed to receive nearly 7,000 visitors per day, and is equipped with a range of interactive digital features to engage visitors, such as a virtual host that guides visitors through the experience, self-guiding activities and digital summaries of the entire tour upon completion, for each visitor.
Furthermore, the UAE Pavilion includes a special section for Expo 2020 Dubai ("Connecting Minds, Creating the Future"). The section underlines the great achievements that can be made when creative minds come together, and projects a positive image of the UAE and the Arab world.
Expo 2017 Astana makes Kazakhstan the fourth Asian country to host a world expo after Japan, South Korea and China. According to preliminary estimates, the three-month exhibition is expected to receive more than five million visitors from 100 countries and 10 international organisations. The exhibition will cover an area of 113 hectares, 25 of which will host 93 showrooms.