U.S. Participation in Expo 2020 Dubai




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On January 15th, 2020, the U.S. Department of State announced the participation of the United States in Expo 2020 Dubai, the next World’s Fair and the first in the Middle East.

The U.S. Pavilion at Expo 2020 will showcase best-in-class American ingenuity and thought leadership to the world. The presence of a U.S. pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai is made possible thanks to the generosity of the U.A.E. government. By law, the U.S. Department of State is not permitted to use public funds for international expositions.

The State Department will partner with many organizations and companies to produce the U.S. Pavilion, but it has contracted with two key organizations to help build, outfit, and run it:

American companies and organizations wanting to learn more about the U.S. Pavilion and how they can potentially get involved can contact the following officials:

  • Commercial Engagement – Thomas Bruns at Thomas.Bruns@trade.gov
  • US Pavilion Overall Questions – Matthew Asada at asadam@state.gov
  • Cultural Programming – Maya Ndao-Fall at Ndao-FallNX@state.gov
  • Exhibition Queries – Doug Mossman at MossmanDM2@state.gov
  • Sponsorship Opportunities – Kara Snesko at SneskoKJ@state.gov
  • Exhibition (Value-In-Kind) – njaffer@thinkwellgroup.com and arashmani@thinkwellgroup.com
  • Operation (Value-in-Kind) – harriet.yorston@tvg-global.com and slieberman@thinkwellgroup.com

To contact Global Ties U.S., please click here.

The official U.S. Government press release announcing the U.S. Pavilion at Expo 2020 states the following important points:

  • Expos, also known in the United States as World’s Fairs, are significant opportunities to showcase American freedom, ideals, enterprise, culture, and global leadership.
  • The U.S. pavilion is made possible by the generosity of the Emirati government in recognition of the strong partnership between the United States and the United Arab Emirates. This is a historic opportunity for a global audience to experience the U.S. pavilion and Expo 2020 Dubai when it opens its gates in October 2021 for an expected 25 million visits during the six-month long event.
  • Importantly, the American private sector will have a golden opportunity to showcase its creativity and innovation, as well as pursue business partnerships and new markets with corporate leaders from around the world.
  • The Department is dedicated to developing an exciting U.S. pavilion at Expo 2020 with an exhibition that engages visitors from around the world to learn more about the United States and the freedom that enables success and innovation.

Pictured: U.S. Ambassador to the U.A.E John Rakolta Jr. at the groundbreaking ceremony for the U.S. Pavilion at the Expo 2020 Dubai site.

A video produced by the U.S. Department of State and depicting the U.S. role in Expos can be found here.

The U.S. Pavilion at Expo 2020 will be curated so as to depict the unique role that American democracy has played in global innovation. America has always been a leader in this area and the experiential design of the U.S. pavilion will help audiences better understand the linkages between American values and progress. The U.S. Pavilion will be organized to take visitors on a journey on a giant “travalator” that will traverse much of the Pavilion exhibit space. Key exhibit areas are being planned as follows:

  • Hall One: History of American Democracy
  • Hall Two: History of innovation in the U.S. and its global impact.
  • Hall Three: Impact of American innovation on the MENA region.
  • Hall Four: What’s next with regard to technology development and innovation in the near future?
  • Hall Five: Will showcase America’s natural beauty, our national Parks, and monumments.
  • Hall Six: Will showcase and promote travel and tourism in the U.S. market.
  • Hall Seven: Will provide VIP Space, as well as event space for various activities.

On November 18th 2020, the U.S. Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai was officially handed over to John Rakolta Jr., U.S. Ambassador to the U.A.E. and Commissioner General of the U.S. Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, at a small event in the presence of select American and Emirati business executives and officials, including Mr. Ulrich Brechbuhl, Counselor of the Department at the U.S. Department of State who represented Secretary Mike Pompeo.

This ceremony took place less than a year from the beginning of the global mega event which, following its postponement, will run from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022.

John Rakolta Jr., Former U.S. Ambassador to the U.A.E. and Former Commissioner General of the U.S. Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai and Mr. Ulrich Brechbuhl, Counselor of the Department at the U.S. Department of State place the last star at the U.S. Pavilion

The Business Council encourages its member companies and partners to engage to the widest extent possible in this important opportunity. And, it looks forward to continuing to work with the U.S. Government, U.A.E. Government, and many other partners in helping make the U.S. Pavilion a success and Expo 2020 the “biggest show on earth.”

For more information about the Business Council’s work with Expo 2020 Dubai as well as the U.S. Pavilion, please contact Mary Zuccarello at mzuccarello@usuaebusiness.org