Bidding adieu to Dubai Expo 2020—A reflection on the success of a grand global event

Bidding adieu to Dubai Expo 2020 – A reflection on the success of a grand global event

Op-ed by Hisham Al Gurg, CEO, Seed Group and the Private Office of Sheikh Saeed bin Ahmed Al Maktoum


Today is a historic day. With just a few hours left for Dubai Expo 2020 to conclude, it is a proud moment for everyone living in Dubai and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – every citizen and resident who once waited for the Expo to commence, and all of us who celebrated its existence each day for the past six months. It is a time that marks the culmination of an event that has rightfully been called the world’s greatest show. 

History has proved that the UAE has been the epitome of resilience. A quality that dictates a lot of government decisions and the economic journey of the nation so far. The Dubai Expo 2020 and its successful hosting at a time when the world was battling an epidemic was made possible because of our foundational value of resilience. At the onset, six months ago, the tone was set for a successful global event. 

Over the past few months, the entire world has looked at us in Dubai with awe as thought leaders, entrepreneurs, c-suite executives, artists, academics, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), corporations, and governments came together under the theme “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future.” Over this period, the Expo has not only helped the country’s economy to reach new heights, but has also cemented the UAE’s position as a world leader in innovation, technology, business, and governance. It has changed the way the world has known the UAE thus far. Building upon Dubai’s reputation as a metropolitan city with a welcoming economy, the Expo has now set the bar high for other world expos to come. 

From exemplifying the benefits of sustainability to putting to use the magic of 5G technology, the Expo has proved to be a learning ground for everyone around the world, across industries, and across corporate hierarchies. The event presented a window to a reimagined future that the world was only talking about, but the Expo brought to life. The last 182 days may sound countable, but the memories and experiences that these days have inspired will shape the future of the UAE and the region for many years to come. 

The event might have come to a close, but the fact that the Expo site will still remain an architectural marvel with inspiring lessons in sustainability, innovation, and happiness, is in itself a commendable feat. The Expo might have ended, but its legacy will live on. 

Once again, I would like to congratulate everyone in the UAE and thank our beloved leaders for their foresight and exemplary vision that made this event an extraordinary success. The Expo will be written in golden letters in the history of the UAE!

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