ASTANA – Kazakhstan will bid farewell to Expo Astana 2017 with a ceremony in which the exposition’s official flag is to be handed over to Dubai, the next city to host the international event in 2020.
World leaders such as the presidents of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan; Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro; and Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani, are to attend Sunday’s passing of the baton.
The official part of the ceremony will take place at the Congress Center and feature speeches by Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev, Expo Astana 2017 chair Akhmetzhan Yessimov and the secretary-general of the Bureau International des Expositions, Vicente Loscertales.
The Kazakh capital also plans to mark the Expo’s finale with a parade, various concerts and performances, and a fireworks show.
The main event is to involve more than 2,000 people, featuring aerial choreography accompanied by a light and laser show encompassing the Expo 2017 theme of “Future Energy.”
South African group Muzart, Kazakh singer Mayra Mukhamedkyzy and the Marat Bisengaliev symphonic orchestra, among other artists, are to provide the music for the closing ceremony.
Expo Astana 2017 has surpassed expectations, drawing more than 3 million visitors and the participation of 115 countries and 22 international organizations.
Since opening three months ago, the Expo has mounted more than 3,000 artistic, cultural and sporting events.
The Expo’s aim is to reflect on the importance of moving toward a global energy system increasingly based on renewables, which help reduce CO2 emissions and dependence on oil while increasing energy independence for regions and communities around the world.
Dubai will host Expo 2020 with the theme “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future.”