DUBAI: The USA celebrated its Expo 2020 Dubai National Day o with a governmental visit and upbeat, colourful entertainment.
Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, and Commissioner General of Expo 2020 Dubai, welcomed Gina M Raimondo, US Secretary of Commerce.
Sheikh Nahyan said, “The United States’ participation exemplifies how its dynamic society has shaped the modern world, and tells the story of the history of the USA, while promoting its latest achievements and innovations.
“The UAE is proud to share a strong and continuously evolving relationship with the United States. We are pleased to be engaged in countless partnerships across various fields, such as science, healthcare, and education, and look forward to witnessing the mutual prosperity of our nations through our joint efforts.”
Raimondo said, “It is a great honour for me to be here with you today on behalf of President Biden. The US and the UAE have an enduring decades-long partnership on every level – trade, mutual understanding and a commitment to regional security and stability. Expo 2020 exemplifies our work to build together a better world and a better future.
“We look forward to continuing our collaboration with the UAE across all commercial sectors. I am very proud to say that the Commerce Department has brought over 150 companies to Dubai this week for our flagship trade mission, Trade Winds, the largest we have ever had, and I think we can continue to do better.”
The speeches were followed by a performance from New York-based singer-songwriter Maya Azucena, then upbeat entertainment from members of the University of Minnesota Marching Band.
Festivities continued throughout the day. The ‘Celebrate America’ festival at Al Forsan Park featured the Arkansas Circus and University of Minnesota Marching Band, and displayed replicas of iconic American monuments such as the Hollywood sign, while Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley impersonators entertained visitors.
Alaskan vocal trio the Pipeline Vocal Project and Azucena – known for her uplifting blend of indie-pop and classic soul – also performed on the Jubilee Stage, and the day ended with a USA National Day film screening at Al Wasl dome.
Located in Al Forsan, the USA Pavilion celebrates innovation and a love of liberty through an immersive exploration of the past and future of the American Spirit. As the former host of dozens of World Expos, the USA has a long history of creating pavilions and visitors are invited to hop on board a super-accessible moving walkway and take in various sights. Exhibits include dynamic digital presentations on America’s history of innovation, a fun ceiling-displayed science narrative, and a replica Falcon 9 rocket. Until last month, the pavilion also displayed a 1764 Qur’an owned by one of the country’s founding fathers, Thomas Jefferson.
National and Honour Days at Expo 2020 Dubai are moments to celebrate each of Expo 2020 Dubai’s 200-plus International Participants, shining a light on their culture and achievements and showcasing their pavilions and programming.
Croatia: Croatia also marked its National Day at Expo 2020 Dubai on Sunday with a celebration of the country’s innovative thinkers.
Andrej Plenković, Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia, was welcomed by Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, and Commissioner General of Expo 2020 Dubai.
Plenkovic said, “I see the role of Expo as a driver of progress, knowledge, creativity and cooperation among nations of the world. Discussions on sustainable models of development, the efficient use of national resources, and on speeding up the green and energy transition put an emphasis on finding creative and innovative solutions.”
“Each country must focus on innovations to steer its development, find its niche in the world, and ensure a prosperous future to its people. This is why Croatia, as its main topic, chose the theme ‘Croatia – Inspiring Great Minds.’ Through the exhibition in the Croatia Pavilion, Mobility of Mind, we present innovations brought to the world by Croatians, some of which are used daily and are universally known throughout the whole world.”
Sheikh Nahyan commented, “Croatia’s participation positions the country as a hub for creatives and visionaries that have impacted the world throughout the centuries, and gives visitors the opportunity to be inspired by some of the greatest minds from Croatia, along with its natural beauty, culture, and substantial opportunities.
“The relationship between the UAE and Croatia has witnessed exponential growth over the past decade, and we look forward to working closely together towards increasing partnerships across the commercial, political and cultural spheres.”
The ceremony at Al Wasl Plaza concluded with a spectacular display of Croatia’s artistic heritage, delivered by musical group LADO. The traditional performance featured the Ojkanje, a two-part singing technique, as well as the Croatian bagpipes, or ‘dude’.
Speaking later, Andrej Plenković commented on the Croatia Pavilion’s location in the Mobility district: “Mobility and connectivity are important for us all in the globalised world, whether it’s the economy, whether it’s business, whether it’s politics or security, whether it’s the fight against climate change, fighting poverty and strengthening and building institutions in those nations which are not as strong as others. This transfer of knowledge and contribution to global progress is essential.”
A business forum, held by the Prime Minister in the afternoon, focused on investment opportunities in various sectors, including tourism and hospitality, IT, and agriculture.
Dovetailing with the Expo 2020 subtheme of Mobility, the Croatia Pavilion explores the ‘Mobility of the Mind’, which celebrates living personalities and recent national triumphs, such as the country’s footballing success.
National and Honour Days at Expo 2020 Dubai are moments to celebrate each of Expo 2020’s 200-plus International Participants, shining a light on their culture and achievements and showcasing their pavilions and programming.