The UK has officially backed Dubai to host Expo 2020, in what it hopes will send a “positive signal” about the Middle East to the world.
In a statement Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs William Hague said staging the event in Dubai would bring together the entire globe.
“We assess that the Dubai bid is exceptionally strong: focussed on global connectivity and accessibility, underpinned by its geographical location and its position as a global logistics and transport hub,” he said.
“All these would allow exhibitors to reach a large and varied international audience.
“We are also convinced that holding Expo 2020 at a time of great change in the region would send a positive signal to the world that this is a region of dynamism, innovation and vast human potential.”
Dubai is competing against cities in Brazil, Russia, Thailand, Turkey. Hague said the competition was “extremely strong”.
If Dubai is successful, it would be the first time the event has been held in the Middle East.
Former US President Bill Clinton and London Mayor Boris Johnson also have publicly backed Dubai’s bid.
The successful bid will be announced in November.