Credit: © SIP / Jean-Christophe Verhaegen, tous droits réservés

During this week's trade mission to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Luxembourg's Commissioner General of Expo 2020 Dubai, Maggy Nagel, signed the contract for participation in the 2020 World Expo in Dubai.

The Grand Duchy is the first country to formalise its participation in the Expo2020. The Luxembourg delegation was composed of HRH the Hereditary Grand Duke and HRH the Hereditary Grand Duchess, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy, Étienne Schneider, and the Minister of Sustainable Development and Infrastructure, François Bausch.

At the signing ceremony, the UAE organiser was represented by His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Expo 2020 Dubai Higher Committee, and His Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General of the Office of Expo 2020 Dubai.

The signed contract outlines the Grand Duchy's presence at the Universal Exhibition organised between October 2020 and April 2021 in Dubai as the architectural project comprising the theme and subjects covered in the future Luxembourg pavilion and its location defines a total area of ​​600 hectares on the exhibition site.

"It is a great honour for the Grand Duchy to be the first country to formalise its presence at Expo 2020 by signing the participation contract," said Maggy Nagel. "The exhibition is an exciting adventure that continues on its way. With our pavillion under the theme "Resourceful Luxembourg", we are delighted to be able to contribute to the success of this world-class event".

At the signing ceremony, Minister Schneider said: "The long-standing close bilateral relations with the UAE, which is Luxembourg's most important trading partner in the Gulf region, have pleaded from the outset for Luxembourg's participation in Expo 2020. Our presence will provide a unique opportunity to further enhance Luxembourg's profile as a gateway to Europe for business and investors in the Middle East, East. As for the pavillion, we will repatriate it to Luxembourg after the Expo2020 and host the future Luxembourg space agency".

Minister Bausch commented: "Currently, the preliminary design of the exhibition pavilion is being finalised. Indeed, the competition project is in the optimisation phase in order to adapt the volume of the construction to the plot allocated".

The three strategic partners in the private sector, namely POST Luxembourg, SES and the Chamber of Commerce, were also present at the signing of the participation contract. Carlo Thelen, CEO of the Chamber of Commerce, said "As the first country to formalise its participation in Expo 2020 Dubai, Luxembourg is once again taking the lead in connecting its companies with those in the four corners of the world and in promoting our skills, our goods and services "Made in Luxembourg". The Chamber of Commerce proudly supports the Luxembourg pavilion, as it has always done since the first world exhibition in London in 1851".

Claude Strasser, CEO POST Luxembourg commented "The signing of this agreement represents an important step for Luxembourg's participation in Dubai 2020. The Luxembourg pavillion, resolutely oriented towards the future, will enable POST Luxembourg to show what the digital world can bring to society. It will be an opportunity to present new communication technologies such as the 5G which will be a reality in 2020".

Karim Michel Sabbagh, President and CEO of SES, said "Our satellites cover 99% of the planet and connect more than one billion people every day. That is why we welcome the overall impact of this event. SES plays a pioneering role in space technologies and confirms its ambition to explore new resources and cross established borders. As a strong partner of the government, we support with enthusiasm the participation of the Grand Duchy in Expo 2020".