Australia minister for trade, tourism and investment, Dan Tehan, has opened the Australia pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, promising visitors an extraordinary journey through 60,000 years of innovation by the indigenous people of the country.
The opening ceremony was also attended by Reem Al Hashimy, director general of Expo 2020 Dubai; Justin McGowan, commissioner general of the pavilion; and Heidi Venamore, Australian ambassador to the United Arab Emirates.
Tehan said: “What we have in our pavilion is something extraordinary.
“It captures 60,000 years of unique innovation and our wonderful indigenous history.
“But it also captures where indigenous Australians are today, how they are at the forefront of everything we’re doing as a nation, especially when it comes to innovation.
“It captures the heart and the spirit of the Australian people.”
The ‘Blue Sky Dreaming’ theme of the pavilion celebrates Australia’s indigenous culture as the world’s oldest living civilisation.
It highlights the indigenous connection to land, sky and sea, and encapsulates the idea of blue-sky thinking, which has inspired Australian innovation for the past 60,000 years.
Tehan said: “The sky is the limit when it comes to the future of our nation.
“That is why [the pavilion] has got the title ‘Blue Sky Dreaming’, because we continue to dream as a nation, and we dream of greatness and of making sure that we continue to have our place in the world.”
Located in the Mobility District, the pavilion will hold a range of events and discussions during the six months of Expo 2020, aimed at strengthening networks, exploring trade and investment opportunities and fostering collaboration around global challenges.
Al Hashimy said: “‘Blue Sky Dreaming’ is a theme that perfectly encapsulates that inimitable Aussie spirit – energetic innovative and bold, living for the future, while always mindful of the past.
“Australia’s programming will bring to bear countless generations of cultural, scientific and social development, from world-class sports and entertainment to the linkage between indigenous tradition and contemporary space exploration, to the future of cities as social melting pots with inclusivity and sustainability at their very core.
“Australia will play a critical role in the global conversation about our connected future.”