The much-awaited Expo 2020 Dubai is coming soon, and preparations are now in full swing! Participating countries are either busy designing or constructing their pavilions, including the Philippines, whose pavilion design was officially revealed just recently. Yay!
Last Wednesday, June 19, Philippine Ambassador to the UAE Hjayceelyn Quintana affirmed the country’s participation in Expo 2020 Dubai. She also shared that the Philippine pavilion will reflect the “Filipino heart and soul” throughout the ages and beyond.
Image Credits: Budji + Royal FB Page
A Glimpse of the Philippine Pavilion for Expo 2020 Dubai
“The ‘Bangkota’ which is the design of the Philippine Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai is the heart and soul of the Filipinos worldwide,” Quintana said during an interview with Gulf Today. “It will reflect who we really are, our contributions to the world, to this part of the world, and specifically to the UAE.”
Quintana recalled that a few years ago, when Dubai won the bid to host the World Expo, she was a senior diplomat at the Philippine Embassy in Muscat, Oman. Even back then, she saw the importance of Expo 2020 Dubai for the Philippines as well as for the Filipinos in the UAE.
The ambassador has been involved with the project since her term as Manila’s Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) – Assistant Secretary for the Middle East and Africa. This was before late 2018, when she was assigned to become Philippine Ambassador to the UAE.
“Bangkota” is the ancient Tagalog word for “coral reef” — a symbol for “the world’s biggest organism made up of the world’s smallest organism.” In relation to this, the “Bangkota” pavilion design portrays the Philippines as a coral reef, with “Filipinos [as the] polyps that grow in colonies and spread out all over the world.”
Notably, the “Bangkota” Philippine Pavilion:
- Will serve as the Philippine centre for trade, tourism, and investments during the Expo.
- Was designed by a creative team composed of Budji Royal Architecture Design, led by architect Royal Pineda and curator/over-all content development head Marian Pastor Roces.
- Will sit on a 3,163.25 square-metre space in the Sustainability District of the Expo 2020 Dubai site, located between the pavilions of Portugal and Canada.
- The main structure will be divided into eight areas. One of these will be dedicated to the Muslims of Mindanao, while two areas will feature 4,000 years of Philippine history.
- The pavilion will include interactive sections and a Tropical Rain Path.
Expo 2020 Dubai is set to take place from October 20, 2020 to April 19, 2021. In March 2018, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte expressed his full support to the event, through a correspondence addressed to the UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
The Philippines Expo 2020 Dubai Organising Committee was formed, led by the Department of Trade and Industry’s Centre for International Trade Expositions and Missions. Also involved are the Department of Tourism, Department of Budget and Management, Department of Information and Communications Technology, Department of Labour and Employment, and the Department of Science and Technology.
Indeed, the unique design of the Philippine Pavilion represents the beauty and creativity of the Filipino culture as a whole. Meanwhile, here are the pavilion designs of different countries that are joining one of the world’s biggest events of the decade, Expo 2020 Dubai!