By Victoria “NIKE” De Dios
As Dubai Expo 2020 draws closer and the Philippines will take part of it to showcase to the world the best of our country, Department of Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez led the international launch of the Philippine pavilion last December 12 at the Expo’s Sustainability District, the Philippine pavilion is a 1,300 square-meter structure housed in a 3,160 square-meter lot. It will be the biggest ever in the history of the country’s participation in World Expos and the first time the Philippines is building from the ground up.
“We take pride in bringing the reality the vision of our beloved President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to take part in Expo 2020 Dubai, now being referred to as the World’s Greatest Show of our time,” the Trade Chief said.
Sec. Lopez shared that Expo 2020 Dubai is a timely platform to enhance Philippine presence in the global marketplace and promote commercial and public interest in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asian Region.
“With the theme, Connecting Minds, Creating the Future, the Expo 2020 Dubai offers an environment for creativity, exploration, and global cooperation, which will contribute to our goal of vigorously advancing science, technology, and innovation as a strategy for long term growth, consistent with the Philippine Development Plan of 2017-2022,” said Sec. Lopez.
He also sees the Expo as a way to cement the Philippines’ reputation as a progressive nation rich in natural resources and skilled manpower; a beautiful country of panoramic destinations and proud heritage and culture spanning 4,000 years; and a nation of creative, compassionate, and caring people deeply connected in communities worldwide.
The Philippine pavilion is themed “Bangkota,” the ancient Filipino word for coral reef, the world’s biggest organism made up of smaller organisms and which is symbolical of the Filipinos. There are over 12 million overseas Filipinos in the world and around 700,000 of them are in the United Arab Emirates.
“With over 190 countries participating and the biggest presence of OFWs in UAE and the Middle East region, it is therefore a very wise decision for the President Rodrigo Duterte to have the Philippines participate in Dubai Expo 2020, and bring pride and inspiration to all the Filipinos in the region, and even worldwide,” said Sec. Lopez.
The World Expo is a six-month expo held once every five years, where different countries showcase the best of what they have to offer. The Expo 2020 Dubai will run from 20 October 2020 to April 10 2021.
The Philippines is not a regular participant of the World Expo, but it has been present in 12 World Expos since 1962. Its last participation was in the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai China, a specialized Expo in South Korea.