Expo 2020 will boost economic growth, attract multinational companies and drive employment in the UAE just as it has in Milan, predicts Giuliano Pisapia, mayor of the city.
Following a six-month run, Expo Milan is set to close on October 31 in the northern Italian city. About 20 million people are estimated to have to visited its pavilions and exhibition areas.
"The expo has been a driver for economic growth, also by attracting foreign investments and companies such as Huawei, Vanke and Samsung to Milan,” Mr Pisapia said.
"Not only are the expo site and Milan experiencing job increases, but also the territory of greater Milan, too. Milan will hand over the baton to Dubai. There is a natural link between the two expo themes. We wish Expo Milan 2015 to represent a driver for cooperation between Italy and the UAE.”
The Milan administration anticipates that sustained employment will be the economic legacy of the world's fair as companies are established and start-ups foster growth.
About 200,000 jobs have been created and the impact on the tourism sector equals €10 billion (Dh41bn), according to research by Bocconi University for the Milan Chamber of Commerce and Expo Milan 2015.
In the UAE, over the next five years, more than 275,000 jobs are forecast to be created to service the expo in tourism, aviation, construction, engineering, infrastructure, logistics, hospitality and retail.
Security was as critical challenge, Mr Pisapia said.
"Milan has enhanced surveillance and emergency response capacity. A city command centre has been set up to ensure a fast and effective response within the city and the expo site.”
In the UAE too, plans have been outlined of security screenings at pick-up points at hotels, metro stations and bus stops for ExpoRider bus passengers before they reach the site.
Officials said there were strong links between Milan's theme of Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life, and Dubai Expo's Connecting minds, Creating the Future.
The UAE is keen to share experiences of feeding an increasing population, dealing with scarce resources and learning from the country's heritage.
"The UAE is committed to sharing knowledge and resources to help others tackle similar problems,” said Salem Al Ameri, the UAE's Expo 2015 commissioner general.
The world fairs are key to forging closer links, said Luigi Scordamaglia, president of the Italian Food and Drink Industry Federation
"This is a unique opportunity, important for Italy and the UAE. I see the field of agri products with huge potential to develop together locally and also abroad.”
A business hub set up within the UAE pavilion at Milan aims to attract companies.
Future Business UAE is managed by Dubai World Trade Centre on behalf of the National Media Council NMC).
"It provides a unique opportunity for UAE companies to engage with private and public sectors in Italy,” said Mr Al Ameri, the NMC deputy director.
This is the first time the UAE pavilion has launched a permanent six-month corporate exhibition to benefit from the expo's global visitor reach.
"Unlike normal trade shows, this is not so much about selling as forging lasting connections and creating new partnerships,” Mr Al Ameri said.
Source: The National