Dubai, 01 April 2019: Over 60,000 racehorse owners, trainers and racing fans embraced Expo 2020’s exciting national engagement programme with a series of colourful and entertaining activities at this weekend’s Dubai World Cup.
Drawing on the Emirati word for ‘welcome’, the #Hayyakum2020 initiative seeks to galvanize the entire nation and accelerate excitement and national pride as the UAE prepares to host 190 countries and millions of visitors from October 2020.
Inspired by the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, of welcoming the world in an iconic venue, Dubai World Cup is a highlight of the UAE’s sporting and entertainment calendar, attracting tens of thousands of attendees each year and reaching a global TV audience of 300 million.
The 24th edition of the Dubai World Cup held at the world class Meydan Racecourse provided an exceptional setting for the first in a number of public #Hayyakum2020 activations, which will also include open events on site, family festivals across the emirates, and opportunities for everyone to show their #Hayyakum2020 spirit, from government entities and businesses, to schools and families.
Attendees at the Dubai World Cup, which this year saw the participation of 109 horses from 13 countries, enjoyed a taste of the rich and diverse entertainment that Expo 2020 will have to offer, with dancers and other entertainers from a range of cultures reflecting the many nations that will participate in the Expo.
The #Hayyakum2020 lounge and large 3D cut-outs of the Hayyakum2020 hashtag across the venue also raised awareness of Expo’s exciting new initiative, and encouraged race goers to show what the word ‘hayyakum’ means for them.
Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General, Expo 2020 Dubai, said: “In less than 18 months, people and countries from across the world will be arriving in the UAE for what will be a truly exceptional World Expo.
“This is our opportunity to tell our nation’s story to the world – our achievements, our aspirations, and the values we stand for. And it has to begin by opening our arms to our visitors and participants and showing them the traditions of hospitality and generosity that are a cornerstone of our society – the spirit of ‘hayyakum’.
“Between now and October 2020, we encourage everyone, irrespective of age, nationality or background, to embrace #Hayyakum2020 and join us as we prepare to welcome the world.”
The #Hayyakum2020 programme began in February when His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, visited the Expo 2020 site, in which he used the traditional Emirati greeting of ‘hayyakum'. Three Emirati students also are supporting the movement and have presented their ideas for welcoming the world to Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy.
More than 54,000 UAE residents also have offered their support to Expo 2020 by expressing their interest to become an Expo Volunteer and act as the ‘face’ of the six-month-long event.
So far, 190 countries have confirmed participation, offering each of them the opportunity to showcase their ingenuity, cultures and traditions to an expected 25 million visits.
#Hayyakum2020 is for everyone in the UAE. Download the #Hayyakum2020 Digital Toolkit from the official Expo 2020 Dubai website, www.expo2020dubai.ae, to discover the many ways you can show your hayyakum spirit.