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Day of festivities celebrates thousands of Expo 2020 site workers

By Wam

More than 2,000 Expo site workers have enjoyed an activity-packed morning of competition and entertainment, in appreciation of their hard work in making the vision of Expo 2020 a reality and building on Expo’s goal to set new benchmarks for worker welfare, health, and safety.

Organised by Expo 2020 and co-hosted by Dubai Police and Dubai Sports Council, DSC, the event included yoga, aerobics, cricket and basketball, a football match against Dubai Police and a tug-of-war tournament. The site workers enjoyed a skydiving display, 70-man motorcycle parade, a police dog demonstration and a performance by the Dubai Police Marching Band.

Held on 1st May, the event topped a week of health and safety training and was part of Expo 2020’s ‘Better Together’ Worker Welfare strategy, which, underpinned by the core values of care, respect and pride, aims to influence the wider operations of contractors to advance worker welfare standards throughout the industry for years to come.

Reem Al Hashemy, Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director-General of Expo 2020 Dubai, said, "At Expo 2020 Dubai, we consider worker welfare as a critical component in delivering a sustainable Expo that contributes to a meaningful legacy for the region. Hosting a World Expo for the first time in the Arab World represents a unique opportunity for us to make a positive impact, collaborating with our stakeholders to shine the spotlight on the importance of worker welfare. Today’s event is a great opportunity to express our gratitude to all our site workers who are essential to making the vision of Expo 2020 a reality."

Winners of the sports contests and other workers nominated by contractors were each presented with medals and gift vouchers. Every worker at the event received a complimentary phone card from Etisalat, Expo 2020’s Official Telecommunications Partner and Official Digital Services Partner.

Major General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri, Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police, said, "We are delighted to show our appreciation and recognise, honour and celebrate the Expo 2020 site workers. Expo 2020 will welcome millions of people from around the world to the UAE, and without the dedication and hard work of the site workers, organising this major global event safely, securely and effectively would not be possible."

As part of Expo’s ongoing Worker Welfare strategy, workers also participated in a week of presentations, demonstrations and practical training at the Expo Training Centre.

Construction is currently at its peak, with nearly 40,000 workers on site, including employees of third-party stakeholders and participating countries.

Expo 2020 Dubai will open on 20th October 2020 and run until 10th April 2021, attracting millions of visitors and more than 200 participants – including countries, corporations, multinational organisations and educational institutions – to explore the theme of ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’.