President Maurer kicks off work on Expo 2020 Dubai's Swiss Pavilion
Ground broken on pavilion named Belle Vues during Switzerland President's official visit to the UAE
President of Switzerland, Ueli Maurer, participated in the groundbreaking of Expo 2020 Dubai’s Swiss Pavilion – named Belle Vues – during his official visit to the UAE.
As part of his visit to the expo site, the Swiss President was received by Najeeb Mohammed Al Ali, executive director of Dubai Expo 2020 Bureau, who gave him a general presentation of Expo 2020 Dubai’s site.
Themes such as water management and sustainable development, which will be jointly presented by Switzerland and the UAE during Expo 2020 Dubai, were also discussed.
Commenting on the milestone, President Maurer said: “Congratulations to the government of the UAE and the team of Expo 2020 Dubai for what they have achieved.
“We are very proud to be a part of this exciting event and it is a great pleasure to be here with you today to witness the start of the construction of the Swiss pavilion for Expo 2020 Dubai," he added, according to UAE state news agency, Wam.
The Swiss pavilion’s structure is inspired by Bedouin tents and will be built by combining scaffolding elements and textiles.
The structure was mired in controversy earlier this year following an announcement that Philip Morris International (PMI), the maker of Marlboro cigarettes, had been in talks to partially sponsor the pavilion.
Switzerland’s Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) announced in July that it had dropped the “controversial sponsorship” proposal it was eyeing with the American cigarette-maker after Federal Councillor Ignazio Cassis faced backlash earlier in the month from Swiss School of Public Health, which said the Swiss Pavilion’s backing from PMI was “unacceptable”.