Ekaterinburg struggles for Expo 2020

Ekaterinburg, the capital of Russia's Urals, has climbed one more level in the fight for the right to host the international exhibition Expo-2020. Russia's file history has been officially handed over to the International Exhibitions Bureau (IEB). The dossier submitted by the Russian organizing committee to prepare Ekaterinburg for the exhibition was accepted personally by IEB Secretary General, Mr. Vincente Gonzalez Loscertales.

The chairman of the Russian Organizing Committee for preparations for the exhibition, Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, Arkady Dvorkovich, confirmed that all of Russia's obligations would be met on time and in full.

"Russia's bid to host the Expo 2020 in Ekaterinburg is a priority for the Government of the Russian Federation. I believe that Ekaterinburg, owing to its unique combination of rich history, extensive business, cultural and scientific life represents the face of modern Russia - the country that is open to the world and deserves to host events of great international importance," said Arkady Dvorkovich.

Russia is fighting for the right to host the international event with Brazil, the United Arab Emirates, Thailand and Turkey.

Expo exhibitions have been held around the world since 1851 every five years. An Expo exhibition lasts for six months; it is considered the third largest event after the Olympic Games and the football World Cup. The theme of the exhibition is determined in advance by candidate countries and should be of interest to entire mankind.

Expo 2020 in Ekaterinburg could become the first international exhibition to be held in Russia. If it happens, it will be of great importance for the country and for the further socio-economic development of the Sverdlovsk region.

Major international events like World Expo will not only position the region, but, above all, significantly improve the quality of people's lives. This was discussed back in July at the meeting between Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and Sverdlovsk Region Governor Yevgeny Kuyvashev.

"For us, this exhibition, as well as other major events, is not just a way to position the country or the region, but also to solve many social problems," said Medvedev, adding that preparations for large-scale activities helps concentrate forces and resources in the place where large events take place.

The presentation of Ekaterinburg as a city that is ready to host one of the biggest events in the world economy was held in Paris in mid-November.

The Ural city was represented by Deputy Prime Minister of Russia Arkady Dvorkovich. He reminded the audience that Russia joined the WTO and would chair the forums of BRICS, the G20 and G8. All of this will give a significant impetus to the innovative development of the country and will become important steps on the way to hosting such a huge event as Expo. He also assured the members of the ШУИ that Russia, the Sverdlovsk region and Ekaterinburg were ready to prepare for the World Exhibition in time and in full.

Ekaterinburg is a young city that already has a great industrial, scientific and  cultural potential. More than 500 hectares of land can be provided for the construction of facilities for the Expo. The square of the territory will thus be inferior only to the one in Shanghai in 2010. The main arena for the exhibition in the Middle Urals will become the national exhibition hall and five thematic pavilions with a total area of ​​90,000 square meters.

It is worth noting that almost all objects required for Expo 2020 will be built within the scope of preparations of the city for the World Cup in 2018.

"As in the case of Kazan, Sochi and Vladivostok, Ekaterinburg will host the best things that we have at any moment of time," said Arkady Dvorkovich.

Ekaterinburg confirms its intention to win this campaign, offering a modern, versatile, and ecologically clean territory for the exhibition. The territory of Expo Park will take over 182 hectares. The rest of the territory is reserved for residential, commercial and recreational facilities, (offices, restaurants and shops), parking, and extensive green areas.

In addition, the center of the site for Expo 2020 will be built as a transport hub. From the hub, one will be able to reach Koltsovo Airport in 35 minutes by electric train. A ride by metro from the hub would take visitors to any part of the city. The rail-road bridge across the Verkh-Isetsky Pond will connect the currently separated parts of the city.

It will take a visitor 1.5 hours to walk around the Expo Park project. If the entire boundary of the Expo Park territory were encircled by people holding their hands, there would be 4,000 people in this circle.

Ekaterinburg hosted a grand flashmob in support of the international exhibition. Several thousand people lined up to build gigantic letters Expo 2020.

As part of the concept to promote Ekaterinburg as a hosting city for Expo 2020, an initiative by Governor Yevgeny Kuyvashev was implemented to brand aircraft in support of the bid. Ural Airlines launched the first jetliner with the logo of the exhibition. The plane carries the phrase: "Ekaterinburg World Expo 2020. Candidate City".

It is assumed that the additional "coloring" of aircraft and the mentioning of Ekaterinburg will promote the city in the world.

According to the governor, it is highly important for the city to make a statement to the world: "After all, the implementation of the project "Expo-2020" in the event of victory will give the region and Ekaterinburg a powerful impetus for development. It will increase the volume of investment, raise business activity and the flow of tourists," the governor said.

Ekaterina Polyanskaya


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