His visit comes at an important point in Expo’s preparations with 190 countries now confirmed to participate and the site fast coming to life with much construction work now completed.
During his visit, His Highness toured the Sustainability thematic district and enjoyed a medley of cultural performances from different nationalities. He was also welcomed with artwork proclaiming ‘Hayyakum’, the Arabic word denoting welcome.
His Highness was welcomed by His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Expo Dubai 2020 Higher Committee, President, Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman, Dubai Airports, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group; Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Dubai Expo 2020 Bureau Director-General and members of the Higher Committee, His Excellency Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of State, CEO of Masdar, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), Chairman of the Board of Directors of the National Media Council;; His Excellency Mattar Mohammed Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the Roads and Transport Authority; His Excellency Major General Abdullah Khalifa Al Merri, Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police; His Excellency Khalifa Al Zaffin, Executive Chairman, Dubai Aviation City Corporation; and His Excellency Eng. Dawood Al Hajri, Director General of the Dubai Municipality.
His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Sultan Al Nahyan said: "Through the efforts being taken by the Expo 2020 Dubai organising committee to bring countries together, locating them alongside one another according to their common themes and building connections between them, and with the large volume of expected visitors, our aspiration is to highlight commonalities between people, communities and cultures from around the world.
“This will enable them to build new connections with each other that last beyond the six months of our event.”
His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said: “We were honoured to greet His Highness today and hear his feedback on the work being conducted to bring the site to life for so many international participants and 25 million visits. His visits always inspire us.”
Some 35,000 workers are now working on the site. Several features, including many public realm spaces visited today by Sheikh Abdullah, have already been completed.
Organisers of the next World Expo, the first to be staged in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia region (MEASA) in the 168-year history of the event, have committed to ensuring all major shell and core construction work will be finished a year before gates open.