India’s participation in Expo 2020 Dubai will go a long way in strengthening its “deep and historical relations with the UAE”, the country’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday.
“India is participating with one of the largest pavilions in this historic Expo. This Expo is a testimony to the resilience of mankind against a once-in-a-century pandemic,” Modi said in a virtual message during the opening ceremony at the Indian pavilion.
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“The theme of the pavilion is ‘openness, opportunity, and growth’. These are the principles India is committed to as it highlights the country’s diversity and investment potential,” the prime minister added.
India’s four-storey pavilion was officially inaugurated by Indian Minister of Commerce Piyush Goyal and Dr Ahmed Abdul Rahman AlBanna, the UAE’s Ambassador to India. Several Indian and UAE diplomats and members of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce were also present.
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Goyal said India shared a special partnership with the UAE. “It is constantly nurtured with the large Indian diaspora living in the UAE. I want to thank the UAE for taking care of every Indian during the Covid-19 pandemic.”
He added: “Expo 2020 will prove to be a landmark in strengthening the relationship between the two countries further.”
Speaking to the media on the sidelines of the event, Dr Al Banna, said: “The Indian pavilion is a great one. The Expo participation of India has been of great importance to us right from day one. Currently, the UAE-India relations are at its best and we’re sharing great bilateral trade relations.”
The opening ceremony was followed by a grand cultural show at the Dubai Millennium Amphitheatre.
Glimpses of the Cultural performances on the occasion of inaugural ceremony of #IndiaPavilion @expo2020dubai, a unique experience of art and expression with light, music & dance.#IndiaAtDubaiExpo #Expo2020Dubai#AzadiKaAmritMahotsav #IncredibleIndia pic.twitter.com/H5lX6bNRTb
— India in Dubai (@cgidubai) October 1, 2021
Among those who attended the event were Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade; Indian Ambassador to the UAE Pavan Kapoor; and Consul-General of India to Dubai Dr Aman Puri.
Dr Thani greeted the crowd with ‘Namaste’, saying: “We look forward to a successful participation of the Indian business community and the Indian expats [in this Expo].”
The event also saw the attendance of leading business and community leaders including steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal, executive chairman of ArcelorMittal; MA Yusuff Ali, chairman and managing director of Lulu Group International; Dr Azad Moopen, founder chairman and managing director of Aster DM Healthcare; and Kamal Vachani, group director and partner at Al Maya group. Yoga guru Baba Ramdev and actor Vivek Oberoi were also present.
“The 3.5 million Indians who live in the UAE are proud of this and shall be visiting the pavilion along with millions of people from participating countries. Aster is proud to be one of the sponsors of the India pavilion,” said Moopen.
“Expo 2020 constitutes an ideal venue to introduce thousands of people to Dubai’s vibrant creativity and culture. It will enhance visitors’ experience through a variety of activities and events that are interactive and help Dubai establish itself as a world-class centre for culture, a hub for creativity, a vibrant city for talent, and as the world’s capital of the economy. It could also attract an increase in investments and millions of visitors,” said Vachani.