Expo 2020 Dubai’s long term investment in the future of the country will boost its economy by AED 122.6 billion (USD 33.4 billion) and support 905,200 job-years between 2013 and 2031, an independent report published by global consultancy EY shows.
During the peak six-month period of the World Expo, the largest event to be held in the Arab World is predicted to add the equivalent of 1.5 per cent to UAE Gross Domestic Product.
The scale of investment pouring in to construct and host an event of this ambition, as well as goods and services consumed by the millions expected to visit and the businesses that will occupy the Expo site in the legacy phase, will result in an economic dividend that will benefit businesses large and small across a range of sectors for years to come, according to the report.
From November 2013 – when Dubai won the bid to host the Expo – until its opening in October 2020, the economic impetus will be driven by the construction sector as work continues on building the site and supporting infrastructure such as roads, bridges and the Dubai Metro Route 2020 line.
Crucially, small and medium enterprises, a core component of the UAE economy, will receive AED 4.7 billion in investment during the pre-Expo phase, supporting 12,600 job-years and in line with Expo 2020’s goal to foster innovation and support small businesses.
Job-years is defined as full-time employment for one person for one year and describes the employment impact over the life or phase of a project.
During the peak six months of Expo 2020, visitor spending on tickets, merchandise, food and beverage, hotels, flights and local transport will propel economic activity. Expo 2020 expects 25 million visits, with 70 per cent of visitors coming from outside the UAE, providing the hospitality industry with an unmissable opportunity to show the world what the UAE has to offer.
The positive thrust will continue in the decade after Expo closes its doors in April 2021, thanks largely to the transformation of the site into District 2020 – an integrated urban development that will house the impressive Dubai Exhibition Centre (DEC).
As part of its legacy, Expo intends to contribute to new business generation, GDP growth and job creation across the region to support a sustainable, resilient and diversified economy – a key outcome of UAE Vision 2021, a set of national priorities to mark the country’s Golden Jubilee.