Sharjah / WAM
The Expo Centre Sharjah hosted 20 specialised exhibitions in 2020, with the participation of more than 2,500 companies and brands, while adopting stringent precautionary and preventive measures to ensure the safety of visitors and exhibitors. This comes at a time when the international exhibitions industry was hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Nine exhibitions were organised in the first two months of the year attracting thousands of visitors, in addition to the participation of local, regional and, international companies. These include SteelFab 2020 which brought together more than 300 local and international companies and 700 prominent brands; Come on Kerala Exhibition in the presence of over 4,000 businessmen with a footfall of more than 60,000; the 9th International Government Communication Forum with the participation of 64 government officials representing 16 countries; and the 7th the Real Estate Investment Exhibition (ACRES 2020) which witnessed a heavy turnout of businessmen, investors, and real estate developers.
And despite the Covid-19 impact on the global economy where most of the in-person events were canceled or delayed, the Centre has managed to restore the dynamism and momentum of this vital sector following the Sharjah Executive Council’s decision on the resumption of exhibitions and conferences activity in the emirate. This was manifested with the hosting of the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF), the world’s largest cultural event which also included a hybrid online-offline model in the presence of more than 73 countries. The event was attended by over 1,000 publishers and witnessed 382,000
visitors throughout the 11 days.
“Sharjah’s robust economic infrastructure has significantly contributed to the quick rebound of the exhibitions activity from Covid-19 fallout, thanks to the directives and visions of HH Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah,” said Abdalla Sultan Al Owais, Chairman of the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and
Industry & Expo Centre Sharjah.
Al Owais added that the events organised during Covid-19 formed an additional impetus to the comeback of several economic sectors in the emirate, thanks to the proactive and forward-looking vision of Sharjah Government, stressing the chamber’s commitment to supporting the emirate’s economic diversification policy, as well as continuing the work to develop exhibitions industry and enhance its competitiveness through creative ideas and concepts.
Saif Mohammed Al-Midfa, CEO, Expo Centre Sharjah, said, “We have adopted special strategies to cope with the pandemic challenges and repercussions. We also organised a considerable number of meetings with the industry stakeholders and decision-makers both locally and globally to come up with innovative initiatives that help accelerate the recovery of this vital sector.”
The trade shows hosted by the Centre included the ‘Big Shopper Sale 2020’, ‘Furniture 360’, and ‘Trendz’ exhibitions, which attracted more than 21,000 visitors, while the 10th Wedding Show 2020, which was organised at Expo Khor Fakkan, also witnessed a high turnout of visitors.
Towards the end of the last year, the Expo Centre organised the ‘Winter Clearance Sale 2020’ which provided the emirate residents and visitors with a shopping experience along with discounts that reached 80 percent on latest technologies, home appliances, smartphones, and premium fashion and accessories offered by world’s top brands.
And as part of its efforts to support and uplift local industries, the Expo Centre launched the 1st edition of the “Jewels of Emirates” Show, bringing together more than 100 exhibitors from across the UAE to showcase the latest gold, silver, diamonds, precious stones, pearls, gemstones, and watches, while the ‘Adventure & Camping 2020 Exhibition’, held at Expo Al Dhaid, was the only event of its kind in the country that catered to the complete requirements of outdoor camping and adventure activities.