The Opportunities of Expo Dubai 2020

The enterprises of Abruzzo are getting ready for Expo Dubai 2020, the most important event in the last months of this year and the first months of the upcoming year. The enterprises could take advantage from this event to enhance or to create new commercial relations with new international or Emirati partners. Expo Dubai could represent a valid link and an occasion for new commercial experiences.

Expo Dubai, as it happened for Shanghai and Milan, is the biggest opportunity to foster commercial exchanges between countries, among which particularly Italy. In 2020 the trade with the United Arab Emirates, where Dubai is located, showed a light downturn for the 16% compared to the previous year. However, statistics registered a growth in the metal and pharmaceutical industry and mechanics (indeed, Abruzzo is rich of food and mechanical companies), rubber and plastic products. However, partial data of 2021 show that in the first five months of the year, there was an increase in exports from Italy of 22.4% compared to the same period of 2020.

Furthermore, imports from the Emirates grew in 2020, with an increasing value of 401% with a strong influence given by a surge in gold purchases, being equivalent to 92% of trade to Italy. The data remain positive even in the first five months of 2021 compared to 2020 (+ 139.1%).

The Expo represents an important occasion for local and foreign people to enter in contact with culture and experiences of other countries through the visits of pavilions, events, showing and meeting, all organized for 25 million of visitors as estimated last year.

Universal exposition of Dubai will be opened the next 1st October, as postponed of one year due to pandemic, that has affected the schedule of several world events, and it will run until the end of March 2022. Expo Dubai 2020 – that will still retain its original name, just as happened as for Tokyo Olympic Games, held in 2021 - is the first universal exhibition to take place in an Arab country. It will be held five years after Milan Expo and ten years after the Shanghai one, and it shows itself as the most coveted destination for those who want to feel at the center of the world in the six months of the event. As for all Expos, the admission will be free and it would be possible for any interested person to participate by purchasing the ticket.

This event is undoubtedly the most important global showcase for countries, people, businesses, activities, organizations that want to meet and exchange points of view and knowledge in a single place and a single time. In the wake of "Connecting minds, creating the future" for the first time, 191 Countries, each with its own pavilion, will be able to present their best ideas, projects, models in the field of tangible and intangible structures. The fact that each country is represented with its own pavilion has never happened before; in fact, in the past (see Shanghai or Milan) there were many countries under the same roof.

Hence, there are a lot of possibilities. The region Abruzzo will play an important role in the Italian pavilion with the stories of the filmmaker Gabriele Salvatores, who has included in its documentaries some shots of the wonderful places of Abruzzo, both through regional and entrepreneurial delegations, that will have the possibility to take part in this grand event. Beyond food and manufacturing, tourism shall not be forgotten as the leading sector for the GDP of Abruzzo, which can take great advantage from that. The promotion of tourism in Abruzzo will be very important to increase visibility and attract new visitors, even thanks to the contribution of the film that will be screened in the Italian Pavilion and that will contain the images of the region.

The participation in Expo Dubai 2020 will be an opportunity to present the territory of Abruzzo and the quality of local production. This great opportunity shall not be ignored by Italy and its local and national institutions, that shall be united alongside companies to promote the made in Italy and made in Abruzzo.

Edited by: Avv. Carlo D’Andrea, Vice President of the EU Chamber of Commerce in China and Managing Partner of D’Andrea & Partners Law Firm, with offices also in Shanghai and Pescara.