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What to Expect at Urban and Rural Development Week? - EXPO 2020

Updated: Nov 17, 2021



What will it take to help the growing population to be able to live sustainably and smartly in the coming years? Questions like these about middle east corporate solutions will be addressed at Expo 2020 Dubai’s Urban and Rural Development Week – dated 31 Oct to 6 Nov 2021.


Over a billion people worldwide live in informal settlements, while more than 70% are expected to reside in cities by the end of 2050. Now is the crucial time to build resilient and eco-friendly habitats backed by inclusive technology and infrastructure.


Global Economic Performance in Urban Areas


The global economic performance is already lagging as 60% area is planned to transform into urban by 2030. It places enormous pressure on the enhancement of existing and new infrastructures. With the increasing demand from urban communities, EXPO will bring together global experts to rethink urban and rural habitats.


Mai Flor, Executive Director, WaterLinks from the UN-Habitat, adding to the situation, shared that: “Asia still has 30 percent of its 4.5 billion population facing acute water shortages and at least 1.5 billion without access to safe sanitation. Seventy million still practice open defecation, and 80 percent of wastewater is still left untreated. Asia makes up two-thirds of the world’s population, so clearly, there is a lot that needs to be done… With the support of the likes of the UN, US AID, the Asia Development Bank, we have been able to put together 80 partnerships and have improved and expanded access to water supply services by as many as 1.5 million customers.”


Top development experts, tech visionaries, and the leading government officials from the world’s prominent and steadfast cities will probe ways humanity can co-exist in harmony with the planet.


Check also: Expo 2020 Dubai Adds New Prospects to Space and Science Technology


What Expo 2020 Dubai is presenting in Pre-Expo Thematic Weeks?


After the successful Space Week, this will be the third in a series of ten pre-Expo thematic Weeks that Expo 2020 Dubai will be presenting. In addition to the above, many influential policymakers, industry representatives, and expo participants will gather together to discuss current challenges and brainstorm actionable solutions. To make it more solution-focused, Q&A sessions and panel discussions will follow. Co-hosted by the UN-Habitat, Aga Khana Development Network, and its Premier Infrastructure Digitalization Partner, Siemens, this week will cover the following elements:

  • Cities and informal community settlements

  • Service provisions (water, energy, waste, etc.)

  • Infrastructure and urban planning

  • Mobility and ecological transportation

  • Comprehensive rural development

Participating speakers Urban and Rural Development Week at Expo 2020 will include:

  • Her Excellency Reem bint Ibrahim Al Hashimy, Emirates Minister of State for International Cooperation, and Director-General of Expo 2020 Dubai Bureau

  • Helmut von Struve, CEO, Siemens UAE and Middle East.

  • Maimunah Mohd Sharif Executive Director, UN-Habitat.



Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy shared that: “the promise of a better future rests on the notion that everyone in the world has a right to safety, shelter, and opportunities for advancement. Cities and rural areas around the world, as well as formal and informal settlements, are facing an escalating burden to provide round-the-clock access to services, utilities".


She further added: “With the help of the brightest minds in the management and development of our habitats, Dubai World Expo and future of Dubai is inviting the world to explore how we can ensure that the habitats of the future are smart, resilient, and sustainable, where no one is left behind,”


Open Session With Dawoud Al Hajri - General of Dubai Municipality


Co-organized with the Executive Council of Dubai, this event will also include a session with an opening statement from His Excellency Dawoud Al Hajri, Director General of Dubai Municipality and Member of the Expo 2020 Dubai Higher Committee.



Furthermore, many globally prominent municipalities and urban planners will participate, including the HonourableMxolisi Kaunda, Mayor of Durban, South Africa; Diana Alarcón González, Chief Advisor and Director of International Affairs, Mexico City; David Lecoque, Chief Executive Officer at Alliance for Rural Electrification and the Honourable Virginia Raggi, Mayor of Rome, Italy.


Urban and Rural Development Business Forum Backs Business Opportunities in Expo 2020 Dubai


The urban and rural development thematic business forum will uncover various business and cutting-edge technologies. As transformation is not a matter of a single community, UAE encourages foreign investments adding force to their attempts. New investors have a plethora of business prospects when it comes to technology. Expo 2020 Dubai emphasized the following factors for economic enhancements as part of its urban and rural development week agenda:

  • ‘City of firsts’ – Future-oriented communities

  • Innovative collaborations for urban logistics

  • Intelligent technologies – Artificial Intelligence (AI) Internet of Things (IoT) technology

  • Balancing urban and rural development

  • Transition to renewable energy sources

  • Adoption of Sustainable infrastructure

  • Sustainable water ecosystem

  • Automated technologies

  • Advanced transport infrastructure

  • Rural sector growth backed by the agriculture sector

  • Improved living conditions in rural areas

These sectors have high collective ROI in the long run as industry experts around the globe are taking part in improving this sector for a sustainable future. If you want to start your business setup in the UAE and benefit from the above business prospects, NH Management consultancy experts can help you find suitable business investment possibilities. Our technical experts will guide you through customizable infrastructures and development projects as per your business requirements.


With extensive networking and vast resource capacity, we are confident to make your sustainability business setup very simple and hassle-free.


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