The French capital hosted the 166th General Assembly of the International Exhibitions Bureau (BIE - Bureau international des expositions) attended by Board Chairman of Astana EXPO-2017 National Company Yerbol Shormanov and Director of the Company International Cooperation Department Nurbek Yergeshbayev.
The session was reported on the ongoing preparations for EXPO-2020 Dubai, EXPO-2023 Buenos Aires and EXPO-2025 Osaka.
Election of a new Secretary General of the BIE, Dimitri Kerkentzes, was the highlight of the session.
The Republic of Kazakhstan has been a member of the International Exhibitions Bureau since 1997. In 1998, our country hoisted its flag over the EXPO Specialized Exhibition in Lisbon for the first time. As an active exhibitor, Kazakhstan has been taking part in EXPOs since 2005 (Nagoya, Japan) followed by Zaragoza (Spain, 2008), Shanghai (China, 2010), Yeosu (Republic of Korea, 2012), Milan (Italy, 2015), Antalya (Turkey, 2016, horticultural exhibition).
In 2012, Kazakhstan has become the first CIS country, which won the right to host EXPO. The initiative to arrange such a grand event in the capital city of our country belongs to the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Elbasy, Nursultan Nazarbayev.
EXPO-2017, an international specialized exhibition held in Nur-Sultan from June 10 to September 10, 2017, became a world hot point to discuss and search for key ‘green’ energy solutions. 115 countries and 22 international organizations took part in the exhibition. About 4 million people have visited the exhibition for 90 days. The exhibition became a powerful driver of the Kazakhstani economy, resulted in the increased goods output and a 78% increase in the demand for tourism services.
The EXPO-2017 International Specialized Exhibition organized and held in our country opened a new chapter in relationships between Kazakhstan and the International Exhibitions Bureau.
In 2017, Astana EXPO-2017 NC and EXPO-2020 Dubai Office signed a memorandum of cooperation in the capital city of the UAE - Abu Dhabi. Under the memorandum, the parties undertook to provide mutual support in sharing experience and knowledge to organize and host international exhibitions.
Furthermore, in the course of the official visit paid by N.A. Nazarbayev to the UAE on March 24, 2018, the countries signed a participation agreement, under which Kazakhstan will take part in the World EXPO-2020 Dubai.
Participation in the World EXPO-2020 Dubai is a great opportunity to raise the recognition and tourist attractiveness of Kazakhstan in the international community, which is very important for the comprehensive promotion of the country's tourism brand abroad.
192 countries have currently confirmed their participation in EXPO-2020 Dubai. According to the Organizing Committee forecast, 15.5 million visitors and 25.2 million visits are expected during 6 months of the exhibition. At the same time, foreign tourists will account for 70% of total visitors.