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Italy signs up for Expo 2020 Dubai
(7 November 2016)


Italy, in a letter from the country’s Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, has confirmed its participation in Expo 2020 Dubai. 

The confirmation came after a meeting between H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Expo 2020 Dubai Higher Committee and Chairman of Dubai Airports and Emirates Airline, and Maurizio Martina, Italian Minister for Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies, held at the Emirates Airline headquarters today. 

The announcement demonstrates the event’s momentum and the widespread global interest in the mega event. 

"Having hosted Expo 2015 in Milan, Italy understands the convening power of the world expos and their value as a collaborative platform to explore areas of human endeavour. We are delighted that Italy has confirmed its participation in Expo 2020 Dubai, the latest chapter of co-operation between our two nations," said H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed while lauding Italy’s participation in the expo. 

"We warmly welcome Italy’s commitment to participate in Expo 2020 Dubai. Following a successful Milan Expo in 2015, Italy’s recognition of our vision for Expo 2020, four years ahead of the event, reflects the progress we are making with preparations for delivery. After similar commitments to participate from other nations in past weeks, there is a real sense of momentum in our outreach activities. We look forward to engaging with Italy, and with all participant countries," said Reem bint Ibrahim Al Hashemi, Minister of State for International Co-operation, and Director-General, Dubai Expo 2020 Bureau. 

Maurizio Martina, Italian Minister for Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies, said, "Having welcomed around 20 million people to the Milan Expo and beginning to see the benefits of the social and economic legacy of the mega event, we know the value of world expos and are pleased to show our commitment to Expo 2020 Dubai. As a destination for Italian business and tourism, we can relate to the Dubai Expo’s theme of ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’, and we have insights into each of the Expo’s three subthemes, Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability, that we look forward to sharing with an international audience." 

H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed and Minister Martina also discussed further areas of co-operation, including trade, investment and tourism. A team of 30 Italian business representatives, led by Ivan Scalfarotto, Italian Deputy Minister of Economic Development, also visited the Expo 2020 Dubai site to see the work under way and learn more about the organisers’ plans. 

Italy and the UAE enjoy strong trade and tourism links. Bilateral trade between the two countries reached more than AED 28 billion in 2015 and more than 600 Italian companies currently operate in the UAE. A total of 300,000 Italian tourists visited the UAE last year, with direct flights available between the UAE and a number of Italian cities, including Milan, Rome, Bologna and Venice. 

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