Dubai is preparing to host the most crucial international event – Expo 2020 world fair. What will the hosting of such a large international event give to the Emirates and the country as a whole?
Preparations for Expo 2020 has led to the launch of several significant infrastructure projects, including the construction of new hotels and other infrastructure facilities. It is expected that by the beginning of the fair at least 160,000 hotel rooms will be required, and to get such a number, a large-scale construction company is deployed in the city.
But local authorities understand that a world exposition is only a temporary event, and for new buildings after the completion of Expo 2020 not to remain vacant, they plan to stimulate the development of tourism. Additionally, it is expected that the steady growth of the local population (both citizens and expats) will provoke an increase in demand for real estate. Thus the construction sector will remain an essential component of regional GDP.
According to the forecasts of the UAE Government, in 2020, GDP will grow by no less than 3.8% (compared to 2.1% for 2019), which the world fair will significantly contribute to. According to the estimates of the EY consulting company, the direct economic effect of Expo 2020 should be at least 1.5% of Dubai's GDP. And although the growth rate is expected to decline slightly by 2021, the positive effect of such a significant event on the local economy will remain. This includes the construction industry itself, the banking sector, the service sector, and tourism.
The experience of other countries in conducting major international events, such as Olympiads, world football championships, or EXPO shows a huge impact on the host economy, but after the event, infrastructure facilities often stand idle. The UAE government will take into account this experience and is already working to ensure that after the completion of Expo, new buildings are occupied by a new business. Thus they plan to open a new district, “District 2020”, where new tenants will take office space and pavilions, including such companies as, for example, Siemens and Accenture. Also, a large exhibition center, which will remain after the exhibition, will be able to host a variety of international events.