Dubai changes sense in the rules of the exhibition, now it will require vaccinations or tests

Visitors to the Dubai World Expo will now need to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or get tested in order to participate in the event.

By Bloomberg

Visitors to the Dubai World Expo will now need to provide Covid vaccination certificates or get tested to enter the event, under new rules issued days after organizers said no vaccinations were needed.

Visitors will now be required to present proof of vaccination or a negative PCR test taken within the previous 72 hours, Expo 2020 organizers said Wednesday. Those who are not vaccinated and have not been tested can get a free PCR test at the event venue.

The move would mark a change from last week when organizers said they “encourage” vaccination, but visitors will not be required to present proof of immunization or a negative PCR test. The Expo is one of the largest face-to-face events in the world since the pandemic began and is expected to attract 25 million visits over six months.

In all the United Arab Emirates, of which Dubai is a part, the wearing of masks is mandatory in all public places and most events require negative tests or proof of vaccination. The number of cases in the Gulf country has dropped to less than 1,000 a day since the end of August.

“As we prepare to welcome tourists to the UAE and visitors to Expo 2020, we must build on our successes in the fight against Covid-19,” said the event’s director general, Reem Al Hashimy, at the notice. “This improved measure is responsible, agile and necessary as we prepare to open our doors to the world.”

The Expo, initially scheduled for October 2020, was intended to attract millions of visitors and provide a boost to the local economy. But when the pandemic struck, bringing the global economy to a halt, the government postponed the event and reconsidered its objectives.

(Updates with details of the Expo 2020 statement at all times).

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