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Financial crisis has little impact on Shanghai Expo

2009. 25 November

( The global financial crisis has little impact on the 2010 Shanghai Expo, senior Shanghai officials said Tuesday.

    "The participation of 242 countries and international organizations has made the expo unprecedented in scale," said Yang Xiong, deputy director of the Executive Committee for the Shanghai Expo, in a report to the Paris-based International Exhibitions Bureau (BIE).

    Many participants have confirmed to the executive committee that they would play a more active role in face of the crisis, Yang said.

    "Iceland, for example, though facing threat of governmental bankruptcy early this year, didn't withdraw. Instead, it decided to participate in the Expo more vigorously to show its unique style of culture and economy," Yang noted.

    Wang Jinzhen, chief of the Chinese delegation to the BIE, said the forthcoming Shanghai Expo takes on a special significance in view of "a joint response to worldwide challenges such as the financial crisis."

    "It will not only gather confidence but also bring development opportunities," Wang added.

    The Chinese delegation reported the latest progress in preparation and formally unveiled the online version of the 2010 Expo at the 146th General Assembly of the BIE.

    To tackle the financial crisis, the organizers of the Expo have offered assistance to developing countries in their exhibitions, the report said.

    Besides, the Shanghai Expo will focus on the promotion of green technologies and innovation. Low-carbon technologies and designs will be exhibited at the Shanghai Expo.

    Vicente Loscertales, secretary general of the BIE, had few concerns about the shocks of the current financial crisis.

    "With the Expo and China's experience, the world can learn many things, such as environment friendly technologies, the quality of life and human relations in the city. I think these are very important for the future," Loscertales said.

    The Shanghai Expo, with a theme of "Better City, Better Life," is scheduled for May 1 to Oct. 31, 2010. More than 70 million people, half of them foreigners, are expected to visit the expo.