Despite an increasingly connected and online world, face-to-face interactions are still indispensable in this day and age. This is especially true of the gargantuan gatherings at world fairs, which originated in Europe as an outcome of industrialisation.
In 1851, London hosted the Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations at The Crystal Palace, touted by some as the first world’s fair. In 1889, Paris hosted an Exposition Universelle (World’s Fair) to mark the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution.
Since then, the world has seen more than 100 of such large scale fairs, including Expo 2015, which took on the theme “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life”, and Expo 2016, a horticultural exposition at Antalya, Turkey.
Next Saturday, Kazakhstan will open its doors to the world as it welcomes people to Expo 2017 at Astana, its capital city, which will run until Sept 10.
Astana’s journey to Expo 2017 began in November 2012, when the city was chosen by the Bureau International des Expositions – the intergovernmental organisation regulating world expos, since 1931 – as the venue for Expo 2017, marking the first time that an exhibition of this stature is being hosted by a country from the former Soviet Union (Kazakhstan declared independence from the Soviet Republic in December 1991).
Astana edged out Belgium’s Liege, its sole competitor, by proposing “Future Energy” as the expo’s theme.
For Malaysia, Expo 2017 represents a great opportunity to show off its green credentials to the global business community, as more than 115 countries will be participating in this event that is expected to draw more than three million visitors.
“We have an unprecedented opportunity over the next three months to prove to the world that green growth is in our nature, and that the best way to create a green future is with Malaysia,” said Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister, Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili as he unveiled how the country will approach the high-profile event.
“As a nation, we have become an emerging market model, and we need to use that leadership to prove that an emerging market can drive positive change towards future energy,” he said in a recent briefing on Malaysia’s approach to the expo.
“We will all be putting our best forward at Expo 2017 to make our nation proud. Our delegation is backed by a nation that has a plan for a green future. That plan is working, backed by our resolution as a nation to deliver a high-income nation that is inclusive and sustainable.
“This is the confidence our delegation can have as we look forward to Expo 2017 with the opening of our pavilion on June 10,” said Dr Ongkili, adding that “our business matching platform will be open until Sept 10.
“Malaysia is ready to showcase our best practices, innovations, solutions, technologies, and strengths in green energy to the world through the Malaysia Pavilion, which has been designed to reflect our theme of ‘Powering Green Growth’.”
Would you like to know more about the Expo 2017? Find more information on the Event here.