The commissioner-general of Portugal for Expo 2020 in Dubai said today, in a statement to Lusa, that the Pavilhão de Portugal has already had “about 42,000 visits” since Expo 2020 Dubai kicked off on October 1st.
“The Pavilion has already had about 42 thousand visits, which considering that yesterday [sexta-feira] 700 thousand visits to the Expo as a whole were celebrated, which means that we are not very far from our average goal, which is to be around 7% of visitors”, said Luís Castro Henriques, that is, between 5% and 7% .
“In this sense it has gone well, we have also seen several patterns of visit that are interesting, as is obvious with the temperature we have throughout this month, there are many more visits at night than during the day”, points out the commissioner- General and also President of the Agency for Investment and Foreign Trade of Portugal (AICEP).
Lusa found that the number of visitors increases at the end of the day, due to high temperatures above 35 degrees, which makes the walks at the Expo often painful.
Located in the south of Dubai, the site covers 4.38 square kilometers, of which around two square kilometers are closed area.
Luís Castro Henriques emphasizes that the feedback from visitors to the Portugal Pavilion – with an area of 1,800 square meters – “has been very positive”.
Therefore, “I’m satisfied”, he said, noting that “in the last week” there was “a very large increase”, considering that now it should stabilize: “I hope above the 3,000 and many”.
Therefore, the balance of almost a month of Expo 2020 Dubai is “very positive”.
It’s because? “First, an operation started right from the start, it is a relevant operation, with everything ready, everything prepared and I believe that this is a real victory”, highlighted Luís Castro Henriques.
The second aspect is that visitors are “available”, point out that visitor traffic is in line with what you were expecting.
The third “is that even so, in three weeks, a set of events have already been communicated here in the Pavilion”, as well as a “series of high-level visits, by members of the Government of Portugal, but also from many other visiting countries. even locally that here at the Pavilion”, he stressed.
Add the combination “with the ICT week [tecnologias de informação e comunicação]”, which took place this week, as well as “the inauguration that we will have tomorrow [domingo], in the scope of the United Nations”, after today events related to the European Union day take place.
“I believe that, in fact, in three weeks a lot has already been done”, he concluded.
On what will happen on Sunday, Luís Castro Henriques pointed out that there will be the inauguration of a work of art, which he did not want to elaborate on, although it is already visible.
“This is a partnership between AICEP and the Portugal Pavilion with the Mission Structure” for the commemoration of the 500th anniversary of Fernão Magalhães’ circumnavigation, “in which we will present a work of art referring exactly to this theme and “the fact this was an expedition that the Portuguese once again made to connect the world and to connect people around the world, which is exactly this theme of our Pavilion “Portugal, a world in a country”, but also if we go to see the theme of the entire Expo” continued.
Asked if he has noticed visitors interested in investing, Luís Castro Henriques said: “I have, that is, this is not a moment to attract investment that is so obvious”.
Of the questions that are asked to visitors on the way out, the commissioner-general classifies as “very interesting” that after having the experience at the Pavilion, they admit that they have never been to Portugal, but that “after this” they intend to visit the country.
“Therefore, this is a first positive effect, after the interactions we have had over time with institutional visitors, what we notice is that they understand very well the message” of “21st century Portugal and what it is like” that we complete very well and we follow this tradition of the last 500 years of connecting people”, he continued.
Basically, they are discovering that Portugal is an “open, competitive country, dedicated to a series of sectors that are highly competitive and innovative and that is succeeding in the world”.
About the future initiatives of the Pavilhão de Portugal, Luís Castro Henriques said that there will continue to be a cultural and musical agenda until the end of the year.
“We will have a month [de novembro] dedicated to the home row (…), but also a set of craft activities or ‘knowing how’ and we will also have interactions with designers, so, in the end, we will demonstrate our ability to innovate through ‘design’ and to combine, above of everything, tradition and innovation”, he said.
“In the middle of this, we will also talk, obviously, here at Expo, about sustainability. I think we have a very interesting month of November ahead of us in terms of content, then we will have fashion, as a whole, from clothing to jewelry, during the month of December”, he revealed.
“We have two months ahead of us with many sectors highlighted and I’m sure we have excellent moments to get to know Portugal better”, summed up Luís Castro Henriques.
Expo 2020 Dubai, which had to be postponed until this year due to the pandemic, ends in March 2022.