Expo 2020 Dubai is the most global World Expo of all-time – the 192 participating countries are positive proof of that. For the first time, each participating country, regardless of size, population, wealth or perceived influence, will have its own pavilion. These examples of the ‘one nation, one pavilion’ policy represent six continents, with populations ranging from more than 200 million (Brazil) right down to about 100,000 (Tonga), as well as the world’s youngest country (South Sudan).
1. Africa: South Sudan
A bright and airy all-white pavilion represents a blank canvas of possibility for South Sudan. Art and culture will be central to this celebration of the world’s youngest country, where visitors can explore how South Sudan plans to move to a brighter phase of development. The attractions include being able to ‘climb’ a seven-foot-tall South Sudanese basketball player.
2. Asia: Sri Lanka
The Creative Youth Programme is an Expo 2020-led idea that has seen a number of nations – including Grenada, San Marino and Sri Lanka – open up the design of their pavilions to creatively minded university students. Sri Lanka’s blueprint takes on a water theme, and the pavilion, titled ‘Island of Ingenuity’, is influenced by the South Asian nation’s latest research and development in products, services and creativity. Fittingly, it will be located in the Opportunity District.
3. Europe: Montenegro
Anybody who has visited the Balkan country, home to about 600,000 people, will attest that its Expo 2020 theme – Blessed by Nature – is hard to argue with. Anchored by 1,000 years of history and Montenegro’s flair for hospitality, the Montenegro Pavilion will use the cutting-edge tech of augmented reality to take visitors into the heart of its nature, across seas, mountains, rivers and lakes, showing off its biodiversity. With direct flights from Dubai to Montenegro, Expo 2020 will showcase a tempting travel proposition for UAE residents.
4. North America: Cuba
The Cuba Pavilion will showcase the country’s colourful culture, famed – among other things – for vintage cars and eye-catching street art, while unlocking its potential across a range of sectors, from beautiful beaches and sustainable cities to renewable energy and biotechnology. The Caribbean island’s innovative spirit might surprise those keen to learn more about Cuba beyond salsa: for example, did you know it has developed a lung cancer vaccine?
5. Oceania: Tonga
Tonga’s contribution to Expo 2020 is a young-at-heart offering that will entertain and educate children on the importance of ocean health and preserving the Earth, highlighting the island nation’s fight against the climate crisis in the Pacific Islands. As well as exhibiting its history and culture, the Tonga Pavilion will promote Tonga as an attractive destination for investment and tourism, building on its position at Expo 2020 in the Opportunity District.
6. South America: Brazil
The planet’s super-economies will be represented at Expo 2020, on a level playing field with the smallest. Brazil has chosen water as its central theme – fittingly, considering it is home to the world’s largest river, the Amazon. The Brazil Pavilion will recreate the Amazon basin via a water feature that visitors can walk through (or around) as they take in the sights, sounds and scents of the country’s riverside areas – the pavilion’s floor will resemble stilt houses common in Brazil’s northern region.