Rome – an eternal city that looks to the future. Italy applied to the Bureau of International Exhibitions (BIE) and submitted Rome’s candidacy to host the 2030 World Expo.
Below is the address to the readers of Georgia Today by H.E. the Ambassador, Mr. Enrico Valvo, related to Rome’s candidacy to host World Expo 2030.
a stroll through the center of Rome is all it takes to realize how it came to deserve the title of‘the Eternal City’. Layer upon layer of history is visible to the eye, a stratification that providesprecious information for scholars, a unique environment for its inhabitants and a source ofwonder for visitors from every corner of the world.
For almost three thousand years, Italy’scapital has been a paragon of continuity, capable of adapting to change and reinventing itspresent. Its extensive artistic heritage bears witness to how Rome has adapted to changingsituations over the course of the millennia. Now, this city is presenting its candidature to hostthe Universal Exposition in 2030.
Ever since antiquity, Rome has shown the way by inventing state-of-the-art solutions to fulfillthe needs of its communities (it already had one million inhabitants at the time of EmperorAugustus!). One such feat is the futuristic network of aqueducts that earned Rome the title of“Regina Aquarum” (queen of the waters), or the network of consular roads that connected theEternal city with all the provinces of the peninsula and the Empire (all roads lead to Rome).
Rome’s vision for the Expo stems from this capacity to harness its past heritage andaccurately assess its current needs with a view to creating a sustainable future.Rome, since its inception, given its location in the center of the Mediterranean and acrossroad between three continents, has sourced ideas and talent from beyond its borders.
The exceptional collection of art and culture would never have existed without thecontributions of many other cultures. Rome as a result is a unique tapestry of history, natureand peoples, a modern capital visited by millions of travelers, where people have been livingtogether, united by the values of freedom and mutual recognition as was the case twothousand years earlier.
Rome is also the metropolis with the largest green belt in Europe. Its city parks, historic villasand natural surroundings endow it with a special balance, a long-standing integration betweencitizens and nature that can stand as an example for the future. Not surprisingly, Rome is thelargest agricultural council in Europe: it boasts extensive and often innovative agriculturalactivities. Once again, its past heritage acts as a boost rather than a burden, a strong platformfor sustainable solutions for our shared future.
Rome has not opted for an immediately newsworthy proposal; it is not trying to grab attentionby referring just to its past. It has instead chosen a programme slogan that focuses primarilyon the present and the future: “People and territories: urban regeneration, inclusion, andinnovation”. The theme outlines a challenge that is common to all international communitiesand embodies the recommendations contained in the United Nations 2030 Agenda.
This theme choice concerns our entire planet and all its inhabitants. It covers sectors such asthe evolution and regeneration of our territories now facing the threats posed by climatechange and the devastating effects it carries with it; the diversity and inclusion of ourcommunities; the sustainability of our urban agglomerations and the need to adopt a circulareconomy; local, national and international decentralization and mobility; digital connectivity asa flywheel for economic and social development.
Expo 2030 Roma intends to address theseissues by stimulating engagement among the various participants, outlining a shared pathand identifying joint solutions.
Rome does not intend to undertake this process to enhance its own visibility. The focus is onengaging participating countries in a collaborative and operational effort that will come tofruition for the Expo. To this end, a series of joint projects and initiatives will also beundertaken in the intervening years to define and manage the different national agendas andrequirements.
The site chosen to host the World Expo 2030 is located in an area on the outskirts of Romeconnected to some of the city’s historic sights and adjacent to one of Rome’s universitycampuses, which will act as a go-between with the Italian capital’s extensive scientificcommunity. The event masterplan, drawn up by Architect Carlo Ratti, aims to set newsustainability standards by eliminating CO2 emissions and reuse of construction and othermaterials while safeguarding the vital water, air and energy cycles. In short, the site, inaddition to being self-sufficient, will also produce clean energy for the benefit of itsneighboring territories.
Rome is also a major hub of a unique transport system. All major European capitals, theBalkans, North Africa and the Middle East are within a two-hour flight from Rome, and withinthree hours one can reach the entire European and Mediterranean area, from Ankara, toBeirut and Cairo. An advanced system of air, road and high-speed rail links means that all themain Italian destinations are close at hand. In 2030 these times will be almost halved thanksto the new infrastructure projects planned by the Italian government.
Rome is also a world diplomatic capital. It hosts 139 embassies of different countries, inaddition to those accredited to the Holy See and San Marino. It also hosts 130 Embassies tothe UN’s Agri-food hub (FAO-IFAD-WFP) and others accredited to the Order of Malta. Thereare a total of approximately 430 embassies present in Rome and close to three thousandresident diplomats, not to mention the many Cultural Institutes. Rome is also a very livelysocial hub, featuring several cultural Associations and NGOs that range from charities to careinstitutes, education and training organizations, the promotion of technological literacy,environmental protection and activities centered around food and agricultural production.
Finally, the Rome 2030 logo: it’s a stylized arch, which changes color to give rise to aninfinite series of combinations. It stands for robustness, matched by the elegance of ancientRoman monuments obvious references to our digital present. The arch is a gateway, adoorway open to new and diverse influences. It also points to a shared path and a range ofopportunities that include the co-creation of many diverse national pavilions. It is expectedthat 30 million visitors will pass through this Roman arch in 2030, on their way to exploring theexhibition pavilions of over 150 different countries.
The most recent Universal Exposition was held in an Arab country, the United Arab Emirates(Dubai 2020-2021). The next one will be held in Asia, in Japan (Osaka 2025). Without anycandidate cities from Africa or Latin America, it is legitimate expectation that the 2030 editionwill be held in a capital of the European Union. It is our firm goal to make available the uniquesetting offered by the “Eternal City,” while presenting a window over the future.”
Ambassador of Italy to Georgia
Italy presented its candidacy to host the World Expo between 25 April and 25 October 2030 inRome, under the following theme: “The Horizontal City: Urban Regeneration and CivilSociety”. The choice of the venue of the 2030 Universal Exposition is expected to be held bythe General Assembly of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) in November 2023.
In September 2022, Italy’s Prime Minister, Mario Draghi, formalized Rome’s candidacythrough a letter to BIE’s Secretary General. Mr. Dimitri S. Kerkentzes, while the completeExpo candidacy dossier has been handed over to BIE in Paris on September 7, 2022.
The above-mentioned theme stresses by itself the importance attached to regeneration ofurban structures, through the active participation of social economy, identified as a promoterof sustainable development, intercultural dialogue and international solidarity.Italy regards world expos as unique opportunities for the International community to gather,stimulating interactions and dialogue functional to finding mutually beneficial solutions tofundamental challenges facing humanity. Building on the success of World Expos hosted in
Italy (both held in Milan), the Italian authorities are doing their best to bring forward anambitious, multi-disciplinary and whole-of-Government project.