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Dubai Expo 2020 cancelled this year due to the impact of Covid-19

United Arab Emirates Architecture News - May 18, 2020 - 13:26   1645 views

Dubai Expo 2020 cancelled this year due to the impact of Covid-19

The organizers of Dubai Expo 2020 have announced that the global mega event has been cancelled for this year due to the impact of the global coronavirus pandemic. 

The event was originally planned to be held from October 20, 2020 to April 10, 2021, but the event was amidst the discussions to change this year's date. According to the recent press statement, the Dubai Expo will now run from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022, which sees a one-year postponement. 

"A one-year delay allows all participants to safely navigate the impact of pandemic, and allows the World Expo to focus on a collective desire for new thinking to identify solutions to some of the greatest challenges of our time," read a press statement. 

Earlier in April, the UAE government proposed a change on the dates of the event in a letter addressed to Dimitri S. Kerkentzes, secretary general of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) and the BIE, the governing body of World Expos, and its Executive Committee met in a virtual meeting on 21 April to consider the proposed delay.

The decision of possible delay was based on a voting by the BIE member states.

Dubai Expo 2020 cancelled this year due to the impact of Covid-19

"Covid-19 impacted our plans and preparations for Expo 2020 Dubai"

"With a BIE General Assembly impossible to stage due to Covid-19 restrictions, Member States voted remotely on the BIE Executive Committee’s recommendation for a delay as proposed by the UAE Government at the beginning of April and recommended by the BIE Executive Committee on April 21," said the Dubai Expo. 

"While the vote remains open until 29 May, the two-thirds threshold was surpassed within a week of voting opening on 24 April."

"We continue to face a global situation that is both fast moving and unpredictable. Over the last several weeks, we have been working hard, both internally and in consultation with key UAE and international stakeholders, to review the ongoing impact of Covid-19 on our plans and preparations for Expo 2020 Dubai," said Expo 2020 Dubai and the UAE response to Covid-19. 

"We remain firm in our collective aim to deliver an Expo that is true to its time and to our shared, urgent priorities. But it is clear that this is not the right time."

The organizers  Dubai Expo also emphasized that "while everyone involved in Expo 2020 Dubai remains firmly committed, many countries have been significantly impacted by Covid-19 and they have expressed a need to postpone Expo’s opening by one year, to enable them to overcome this challenge."

"World Expos bring people together in a spirit of hope and collaboration for a better future. That is more needed now than ever, and we look forward to welcoming a world that is more resilient and unified in purpose, having overcome these very challenging times for us all."

Dubai Expo 2020 cancelled this year due to the impact of Covid-19

Award-winning British artist and stage designer Es Devlin's UK Pavilion. Image courtesy of Es Devlin

Dubai Expo 2020 was expecting 25 million visitors in the 6 months

The Dubai Expo 2020 was expecting estimated 25 million visitors for the event in the 6 months. The forum was going to welcome more than 200 countries and international organisations coming together to work towards a brighter future.

The Dubai Expo 2020's theme was set as "Connecting minds, creating the future", the event was going to accommodate hundreds of pavilions with interactive exhibits, live entertainment, memorable meeting spaces, quirky hangouts.

JKMM Architects, Carlo Ratti Associati, Foster + Partners, Es Devlin were among architects and designers of the Dubai Expo 2020 pavilions. Asif Khan's gigantic entry portals were almost completed at Expo 2020 Dubai. 

Top image: Thematic pavilion: Mobility Pavilion by Foster + Partners. Image courtesy of Dubai Expo 2020

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