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U.S. raises two-thirds of funds for Shanghai World Expo attendance

2009. 21 September

( The United States has raised about two-thirds of its participation cost for the World Expo 2010,said Jose H. Villarreal, U.S. Commissioner General of Section of the U.S. Exhibition to World Expo Shanghai 2010 on Monday.

    "The budget has not changed. It's still about 61 million U.S dollars," said Villarreal.

    When asked the exact amount of the funds raised, Villarreal said 40 million U.S dollars is a "general number".

    "We are in various stages of negotiation with funders, so the target is actually greater than that (40 million) at the moment," he said.

    "The funding will not be an impediment to completing the pavilion and opening it on May 1 next year," said Villarreal.

    About 70 days ago, when the United States signed a contract to take part in the Expo 2010, almost half of the funds needed had been raised.

    The United States wants funds through sponsorships rather than from taxpayers, according to the its laws. Against the backdrop of the financial crisis, the United States did not confirm its participation until July 1, one day later than the deadline of June 30.

    "A dozen companies" including 3M, Dell, GE and Pepsi "have made firm financial commitments" and "we are negotiating with another group of companies," said Villarreal.

    Although the funds come from sponsorships, Villarreal said the United States pavilion will not be "a big corporate advertisement".

    "We want to make sure that the participation that companies are involved in is related to the theme of the pavilion and Shanghai Expo," said Villarreal. Source: