Piyush Goyal, Navdeep Singh Suri, Vipul, Dr Azad Moopen, Yusuffali MA, Dr Sangeeta Reddy, Nimish Maknava, BB Swain and other officials at the unveiling of the Indian pavilion for Expo 2020 in Dubai on Saturday.
Dubai - Indian pavilion designed unveiled, will have different daily programmes through 173-day event
India on Saturday announced the groundbreaking of its Expo 2020 pavilion, which will be one of the largest and located in the Opportunity District close to iconic Al Wasl Plaza.
Revealing details, Dr Sangeeta Reddy, president-elect of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), said the plot is spread over 1.14 acres (over 4,600 sqm) and construction is expected to be completed much ahead of the start of the Expo on October 20, 2020. India's immediate neighbouring pavilions will be the US, Germany, Japan, Italy and Kazakhstan.
She said the 173-day exposition will have a different programme each day. "There will be discussions, debates and conferences. Some of the highlights or signatures will be FICCI Frames and FICCI Heal, which will attract global talent to speak at both the conferences. After every 15 days, the theme within the pavilion will change through digital technology to keep bringing in new aspects," she said.
Piyush Goyal, India's Minister for Commerce and Industry and Railways; Navdeep Singh Suri, Ambassador of India to the UAE; Vipul, Consul-General of India in Dubai; Nimish Makvana, president of the Indian Business and Professional Council; Dr Azad Moopen, chairman and managing director of Aster DM Healthcare; Yusuffali MA, chairman of Lulu Group; and other senior members of the Indian community attended the ceremony.
"The theme of the pavilion is that the 'Future is in India'. we plan to give businesses and visitors not just engaging but an unforgettable experience. The best of expositions will highlight global India, made in India and stories of contemporary success in economy and space. In addition, the best of Indian culture, tradition and tourism will come alive at pavilion," Dr Reddy added. "The pavilion will stand out among the rest and reflect ideologies of our culture as well as futuristic capabilities."
The pavilion is divided into two parts: One main pavilion for exhibitions that would be retained as part of legacy, while a plaza will house retail area and will be dismantled after the event, said BB Swain, additional secretary at India's Department of Commerce.
He said the pavilion will focus on bilateral, multilateral and international programming and B2B, B2G and B2C events to showcase the best of stories emanating out of India. "We don't' even want to miss a single day, therefore, pavilion will host different events every day. We will achieve this ambitious goal with the help of Indian diaspora here in the UAE."
Swain revealed that the pavilion's third floor will be dedicated for leading Indian and UAE MNCs so they will be able to participate longer. The second floor will serve private and public sectors with a focus on startups, innovation and ecosystems, while the first floor will be allocated for public sector entities.
India will highlight its capabilities and expertise in the field of textiles, transport, logistics, education, entertainment, tourism and hospitality, accounting and finance, telecommunication, infrastructure, defence, aviation, gems and jewellery, food process and dairy products, oil and gas, pharmaceutical, steels and metals, and several other industries.
In addition, special 'India Days' at Expo 2020 will be marked on November 14, 2020 for Diwali and January 26, 2021 for Republic Day.
Suri highlighted the size and strength of the Indian community in the UAE, saying "the pavilion will be incomplete without participation of Indian business community as all of them stepped forward and I see them as a real bridge between India and the UAE".
Vipul said: "Our participation should be among the best because of three reasons. Although there are a number of international events in Dubai, Expo 2020 is the biggest by far in recent years; secondly, the Indian community is largest with 3.3 million and have direct responsibility for the success of the Expo; thirdly, the leadership of Dubai has been gracious in offering one of the largest plots for the Indian pavilion. Thus, the largest community should build the best pavilion."
Makvana said the Indian diaspora has contributed strongly to the UAE's growth and is pretty optimistic for the growth of two countries.
"Ties between India and the UAE are going through golden era. Bilateral relationship has matured ad transformed into comprehensive strategic partnerships as both countries explore deeper coordination in different areas," Makvana added.
'UAE to play key role in India's $5T economy bid'
India's aim to become a $5 trillion economy is certainly doable and the UAE has a huge role to play in that story, said Goyal.
"Dubai is a city that grows every day and where construction never stops. It is the city which is always evolving and that is the state of the Indian economy. It is a country which is evolving, growing and engaging with the rest of the world; it is a country destined to become superpower and you are going to be part of it," Goyal at the unveiling ceremony.
He stated that Expo 2020 offers an opportunity to showcase the best of India and the future of India to the world.
"This project is something Prime Minister Narendra Modi has keen interest to make it success. It is a beginning of new chapter that will further strengthen bond between the two counties."
He pointed out that there is a much higher potential for growth in bilateral trade with the UAE which stands at $60 billion.
Goyal said the time is high for India to engage with every nation and grasp the opportunity that has come its way to become a superpower.
Yusufffali said they are excited to partner with the Indian government in setting up the world-class Indian pavilion at the prestigious Dubai Expo 2020.
"We will work closely with the organisers in this initiative to showcase the best that our country has to offer to the world. I am sure Indian Pavilion will be able to stand out as the best amongst the participating nations," he said.
Dr Moopen said this is an opportunity to showcase India's capabilities to the whole world. "This is an excellent prospects for us to show our culture, technology, innovation and research capabilities to the world. Having a large India pavilion at Expo 2020 will also boost India-UAE relations," Dr Moopen said.