By Choi Jin-woo
Minister of Foreign Affairs Park Jin has made a final pitch in Paris for Busan’s bid to host the 2030 World Expo.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Nov. 4 said he checked the strategies and action plans during his visit from Nov. 2-3 for the campaign and requested support by hosting luncheons and dinners with International Bureau of Expositions (BIE) representatives and France-based ambassadors from 12 countries highly likely to vote in the upcoming BIE General Assembly.
“We hope that the Busan Expo will serve as a platform to discuss sustainable solutions for humankind’s shared challenges like responding to climate change, providing solutions for food shortages and reducing the digital divide,” he said, stressing tangible benefits for participating countries and urging them to play active roles and back the bid.
The ministry quoted attendees as calling Busan “an excellent candidate city for hosting the expo and wish for Korea’s efforts to yield positive results,” and for the port city to hold the event “successfully.”
In talks on Nov. 3 with BIE Secretary General Dimitri S. Kerkentzes, Minister Park expressed his wish to continue close cooperation with the BIE.
Also that day, Minister Park chaired a meeting of a private-public task force for supporting Busan’s bid and urged that all efforts be made up to the last minute. Those attending included representatives from leading Korean organizations like the Korean Embassy in Paris, the government’s permanent delegations to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and UNESCO, and Busan Metropolitan City and those from Korean companies such as SK, Samsung Electronics and POSCO.
At its annual gathering in Paris on Nov. 28, the BIE will announce the host city for the 2030 World Expo from among the three contenders of Busan, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and Rome.