Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Dr Nayef Falah Al-Hajraf and other officials mark the Honour Day at the Expo 2020 Dubai on Thursday.
Staff Reporter, Gulf Today
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) celebrated its Honour Day at Expo 2020 Dubai in the presence of Dr Nayef Falah Al-Hajraf, GCC Secretary-General, with a special operetta also performed to mark the occasion.
Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence and Commissioner-General of Expo 2020 Dubai, welcomed Dr Al-Hajraf and Sheikh Fahim bin Sultan Al Qasimi, former GCC Secretary-General. Sheikh Nahyan said, “The GCC’s participation features what the region has achieved through a unified identity, showcasing the historical legacy of the council, the pillars and projects on which it has worked, and its future aspirations and plans.
The GCC has played a significant role in unifying efforts to achieve coordination, integration and cohesion among its Member States in all areas, he added.
Sheikh Nahyan stated, “We laud the GCC Pavilion, underlining the earnest desire to maintain Khaleeji heritage and working further to enhance strategic and brotherly relations for a better future.”
Dr Al-Hajraf said, “The GCC has proven its ability to face world crises and changes. Today, the GCC has become a cornerstone for security, stability and safety for its people. It has also become a symbol of our members’ comprehensive development and ambitions.
“The UAE has demonstrated its ability to efficiently and distinctively host international events and occasions. We – the GCC, the Gulf and Emirati people – have the right to feel proud.”
The celebration began with a flag-raising ceremony at Al Wasl Plaza, followed by an operetta, Khalejena Wahed, prepared and organised by GCC Pavilion, while the Kuwaiti Television Artistic Group performed a show reflecting the deep-rooted ties and relations among the GCC’s six Member States (UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, and Qatar).
The Honour Day was also marked in the skies, with a UAE Army helicopter flyby, then a colourful air show by Al Fursan (The Knights), the UAE Air Force’s aerobatic team.
The seven jets soared in formation across the sky, equipped with white, red, blue and green smoke generators that left magnificent trails behind them. Onlookers watched in amazement as the team tumbled and twirled through the air in perfectly choreographed movements above Expo 2020 Dubai.
The Gulf Cooperation Council Pavilion, located in the Opportunity District under the theme’ Unified Vision for a Promising Future’, symbolises the common destiny of all its the Member States in the past, the present and the future.
The pavilion explains the GCC’s achievements since its foundation in Abu Dhabi in 1981 and highlights several cornerstones, including historical heritage, integration and future aspirations.
Meanwhile, the Philippines Pavilion “Bangkta” at Expo 2020 Dubai has recorded over one million visitors as of mid-March, driving its unique key message of “cultural sustainability” to Expo’s global audiences.
Kathelyn Nida Mendres and her family stepped within the grounds of the Bangk?ta to a pleasant surprise when they learned that they were the one-millionth visitor marking a historic number of visits to one of Expo 2020 Dubai’s largest pavilions.
To celebrate the visit, the Philippines Pavilion gifted the family with a special gift bag from ‘Bangk?ta’ filled with delicious treats shipped straight from the Philippines.
Philippine Department of Trade and Industry Assistant Secretary for the Trade Promotions Group and Philippines Expo 2020 Dubai Alternate Commissioner General, Rosvi C. Gaetos, highlighted that this milestone affirms the interest of Expo 2020 Dubai’s tourists in the Philippines and its 4,000-year story of the Filipino voyage that piques the curiosity and enthralls the eyes of visitors.
“The Philippines Pavilion sets itself apart with its unique look and message that shares the story of the Filipinos as they embarked a journey for the past 4,000 years – and today, many overseas Filipinos continue on that track especially here in the UAE where nearly a million Filipinos live, thrive, and contribute to the development of this country,” said Gaetos.
She added that the Organising Committee of the Philippines Pavilion had prepared a host of events that celebrates the country’s brand of food, fitness, and fun that visitors could look forward to in the run-up to Expo 2020’s closing date.
“We’re proud to join Expo 2020 Dubai’s ‘1 million club’ as we capture and sustain the interest of visitors through the myriad of our exhibits, activities, food, and more that we will be sharing to the world as Expo 2020 culminates this month,” added Gaetos.
Colombia: Investment prospects and opportunities to contribute to Colombia’s sustainable development in the water sector will be extensively discussed by the country’s Vice Minister of Water and Basic Sanitation, Jose Luis Acero, during his visit to the Expo 2020 Dubai. Delegates from the water and sanitation sector, will also be present along with the Vice Minister for the Expo Water Week, which will take place from March 20 to 26, 2022.
The Expo Water Week will feature a wide range of worldwide water interventions, innovations, and best practice solutions to promote the efficient use of water. Colombia is keen to invest in increasing water consumption efficiency in all its sectors in order to ensure the sustainable management of water supply to address water scarcity issues and to enhance water quality.
Furthermore, Colombia also targets cutting down on water pollution by reducing the release of chemicals and hazardous materials into its waterways. It thus would require the need to invest in technologies such as water recycling and safe reuse of treated water by up to 95 percent. In this regard, the country’s leaders in the water sector seek to benefit from Expo events in line with its goals of building sustainable partnerships and promoting investment opportunities in the country.
Acero will participate in several business meetings and forums during the week to share Colombia’s commitment to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG 6 which is focused on ensuring access to water and sanitation for all.
The delegation from the Vice Ministry of Water and Basic Sanitation (VASB, acronym in spanish) will include the Superintendent of Home Public Services, the President of FINDETER (National Development Bank) and the President of the Colombian Association of Sanitary and Environmental Engineering (ACODAL, acronym in spanish), among others. They will join the Vice Minister in various business meetings and conferences throughout the Expo Water Week. Some of these activities include the Water Business Forum and meetings focused on developments in Latin America.