May 21, 2024
Business Events

BIE Conducts Its First Technical Visit To Saudi Arabia

In Connection With Expo 2030 Riyadh

A Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) delegation, led by its Secretary General Dimitri S. Kerkentzes, has concluded the organisation’s inaugural technical visit to Riyadh. The visit was in connection with Saudi Arabia’s election as the host country of Expo 2030 Riyadh.

The four-day visit was crucial in preparing for Expo 2030 Riyadh. It was designed to facilitate in-depth technical discussions, scrutinise Expo 2030 plans, and formulate the Expo 2030 Riyadh Registration Dossier.

On May 1, the BIE chief was welcomed by HRH Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince, Prime Minister, and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Royal Commission of Riyadh City.

During the four-day visit, the BIE delegation engaged in pivotal dialogues with key Saudi leaders, including HH Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ahmed Al-Khateeb, Minister of Tourism, and Saleh Al-Jasser, Minister of Transport and Logistic Services.

Meetings were held with key figures spearheading the Expo 2030 project, including Ibrahim Al-Sultan, Acting CEO of RCRC; Mohammed Al-Suraysri, Secretary of the Expo Higher Committee; and Yasser Al-Rumayyan, Governor of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund. These dialogues underscored the high-level commitment to the Expo 2030 Riyadh project.

BIE
CGI of the Expo 2030 Riyadh site. Credit: Expo 2030 Riyadh

Headquartered in France, BIE is the intergovernmental organisation that oversees and regulates all international exhibitions that last more than three weeks and are non-commercial.

4 Exhibition Types

The BIE organises four types of exhibitions under its auspices: World Exhibitions, Specialised Exhibitions, Horticultural Exhibitions, and the Triennale di Milano.

Set under the thematic umbrella of ‘The Era of Change: Together for a Foresighted Tomorrow,’ Expo 2030 Riyadh aspires to host 197 countries and 29 international organisations from October 1, 2030, to March 31, 2031.

Since Saudi Arabia clinched the Expo 2030 bid on November 28, 2023, during the 173rd General Assembly of the BIE, meticulous preparations have been underway at the highest echelons to lay the groundwork for this globally acclaimed event. Saudi Arabia won the hosting rights, overcoming Italy’s and South Korea’s bids.

These endeavours encompass initiating proceedings about Expo infrastructure alongside crafting the Registration Dossier of Expo 2030 Riyadh, marking the next phase in the Expo’s organisational trajectory.

Comprehensive Blueprint

Building on the insights from the candidature dossier, the Expo 2030 Riyadh Registration Dossier is a comprehensive blueprint that will unveil the Expo’s execution roadmap. It will encompass legislative and financial frameworks, the Expo site Master Plan, and legacy blueprints, guiding the Expo’s successful execution.

Upon submission to the BIE and subsequent review by Member States, the BIE General Assembly will formally register Expo 2030 Riyadh, paving the way for Saudi Arabia to extend diplomatic invitations to international participants and embark on earnest preparatory endeavours.

Dimitri S. Kerkentzes said: “On all fronts, Saudi Arabia exemplifies its commitment to collaborating with the BIE and its Member States to ensure the resounding success of Expo 2030 Riyadh. I eagerly anticipate unfolding the next chapter in this narrative as the Registration Dossier crystallises and the project gains momentum.”

In June 2024, a Saudi delegation will, for the first time after the Arabian nation was elected the host country, deliver a progress report on Expo 2030 Riyadh to the BIE Member States during the 174th General Assembly of the BIE.

World Expos, colloquially known as International Registered Exhibitions, epitomise global convocations wherein nations converge to address contemporary global challenges.

These spectacles offer immersive experiences within a chosen thematic realm, captivating audiences through engaging activities. Occurring every five years and spanning up to six months, World Expos attract millions of visitors, enabling participating countries to construct remarkable pavilions while ushering in transformative impacts upon the host city for years.

The most recent iteration, Expo 2020 Dubai, themed ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future,’ witnessed over 24 million visits.

Next in line is Expo 2025 Osaka Kansai, held from April 13 to October 13, 2025, under the banner of ‘Designing Future Society for Our Lives’.

Featured image: (L-R) BIE Secretary General Dimitri S. Kerkentzes meets with HRH Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince and Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia, on May 1, 2024, in Riyadh. Credit: BIE

    Arnold Pinto

    Arnold Pinto

    Arnold Pinto is an award-winning journalist with wide-ranging Middle East and Asia experience in the tech, aerospace, defence, luxury watchmaking, business, automotive, and fashion verticals. He is passionate about conserving endangered native wildlife globally. Arnold enjoys 4x4 off-roading, camping and exploring global destinations off the beaten track.
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