Run-up to 2020
While trade, tourism, travel, real estate, retail and financial services are said to be some of the key drivers of Dubai economy, various events from vibrant sectors of diverse scales add immensely to its impetus. The strategic location and exceptional connectivity have placed Dubai, as the gateway of Middle East to the rest of the world over several decades; it has resulted in Dubai being the trade hub of the region as well as the epicentre of major events and exhibitions.
All these events and initiative have great value to its participants but collectively it has a greater impact on the overall economy and growth of the city in multiple ways. In the past, we have seen major sporting events like Olympics, FIFA, Commonwealth and various World Cups contribute economically to the host countries, while there are few cities which are known for the major events that it hosts like Paris for fashion, Davos for World Economic Forum, England for football etc. These events and activities form an integral part of the city’s economy and cultural ethos.
Home of events
Dubai hosts various trade shows, art exhibitions, musical shows, literature fests, economic and sports events whether it is World Government Summit, Gulfood, Fitness Challenge, Shopping Festival, Gitex and various other initiatives. Especially, the dedicated and purpose-built complex for exhibition and events, Dubai World Trade Centre is home to numerous events throughout the calendar year.
One such major event which we all are looking forward to is Expo 2020, a six-month-long extravaganza. Dubai witnesses almost one significant event every week but the magnitude and scale of Expo 2020 makes it the most sought-after event of this decade. In light of the upcoming Dubai Expo 2020, the major sectors where we anticipate major growth are infrastructure, hospitality, tourism, human resource & communication, social and economic impact.
Infrastructure & hospitality
As Dubai is gearing up for Expo 2020, the major infrastructure developments include 15 km of new rail lines, road connectivity towards Dubai International Airport and Expo site. To enhance the transport infrastructure, Road and Transport Authority (RTA) is planning approximately 625 new buses, 900 new taxis, 14 bus stations and a new metro link as well as port connectivity.
When it comes to the event venue, a whole new District 2020 is taking shape in the 145 sq.km. area of Dubai South. The total value of projects linked to Dubai Expo 2020 is estimated at Dh 122 billion. The development includes exhibition centres, residential complexes, business parks, logistic hubs and hotels.
Dubai has been a major tourist attraction of the entire Middle East. Expo 2020 is going to further boost the tourism sector with more than 200 participants from 120 countries and an estimated 25 million visitors expected to visit Dubai between October 2020 and April 2021. Major tourist attractions of Dubai, besides the tallest manmade building Burj Khalifa and manmade islands Palm Jumeirah would be Dubai Opera, City Walk, Water Canal, IMG World of Adventure, Parks & Resorts and upcoming projects like Dubai Eye, Harbour Project and Dubai Creek.
People and Communication
Human Resources and Media is said to be another major sector which will see exceptional growth and increase in activities. As we come closer to the mega event, it’s expected to generate more than 2, 50,000 jobs from the preparations to culmination. All the sectors like hospitality and leisure will require highly skilled professionals apart from blue colour workers for the large-scale infra-developments. During the preparations as well as the actual event with numerous activities happening simultaneously, need for a lot of promotional content, design, research, reporting and audio-video content is obvious. Thus, Expo 2020 will be a great opportunity for media and communication professionals.
Expo 2020 is also an opportunity to attract foreign investments which are expected from USD 100 to 150 billion across various sectors like real estate, retail, hospitality, healthcare and IT. It is expected that the economy of Dubai will grow at a rate of 4 percent in the run-up to the main event. It will also open up windows for further economic diversification and investments in Dubai and UAE into a plethora of sectors like real estate, medical tourism, sustainable energy, IT and Innovation.
The mega event Expo 2020 will have a continual impact on the economic growth of Dubai and the region. We are already aware that the multibillion-dollar event venue will be converted into a multipurpose community District 2020. Apart from the above-mentioned sectors, one area wherein such mega events leave an everlasting impact on the host country is its global stature. For the last three decades, Dubai has earned a reputation for real estate, trade and tourism marvel on the world stage. Expo 2020 is definitely going to be a crowning jewel in the growth story of the global metropolis, Dubai.