The World Expo 2020 is due to run in Dubai from October to April, but the coronavirus threat looms on the horizon as events all around the world are cancelling or postponing.
As the UAE’s total expenditure on the event approaches around US $9 billion, according to figures released by the Expo 2020 Dubai Bureau, organisers have made a statement on the potential impact that coronavirus might have.
“Alongside the government of the UAE, we are working hard to adapt to unfolding events surrounding the spread of COVID-19,” said an Expo 2020 Dubai spokesperson.
“The health and wellbeing of everyone living in and visiting the UAE is our top priority and will not be compromised. Like many governments around the world, the UAE authorities have taken robust preventative measures to contain the rapid spread of the virus.
“In common with other organisations, Expo 2020 Dubai is closely monitoring ongoing developments and taking sensible precautions to manage and mitigate the risk to all those involved in the Expo.
"As we continue to prepare for this event, we will be adjusting planned preparations, as changing circumstances require. We will be diligently following the latest guidance from the Dubai Health Authority, Ministry of Health and Prevention, World Health Organisation and other relevant bodies.
“Expo 2020 is not due to open until late October and we continue on track. We are working very closely with UAE authorities and the International Bureau of Expositions in Paris as the situation around the world evolves.
"We will remain attentive and alert in the coming days and weeks and are confident that the collective strength and resilience of our Expo community will enable us to navigate through these most difficult of times.”
Expo 2020 is planned to be 173 days of global music, tech, culture and creativity, with 60 live events every day and 150,000 average daily visitors.
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