Press Conference


A prominent World Association promoting the exchange of ideas and experiences among the protagonist countries of Universal Expositions

Milan, 16 July 2014. An exclusive Club, dedicated to Commissioners and their teams from countries attending Expo Milan 2015, has been launched with the purpose of creating a network within which members can share their experiences, discuss common issues and explore solutions. A club of excellence created in Milan that aims to spread worldwide, starting in cities that will host the forthcoming Universal Expos.
These are, in brief, the goals of the World Expo Commissioners Club (acronym WECC), presented today in Milan in the presence of Giuliano Pisapia, Mayor of the city of Milan, Piero Fassino, Mayor of the City of Turin, Giuseppe Sala, CEO of Expo 2015 S.p.A. and Commissioner of the Government of Italy for Expo Milano 2015 and a number of founding members.

The World Expo Commissioners Club was founded last April by a group of diplomats, businessmen, managers and institutional officials involved in Universal Expos. Among them is Alessandro Rosso, President of Alessandro Rosso Group, a company that has already been involved in Expo-related activities since Shanghai 2010, Ayman Ibrahim Al Afifi, President of Butterfly Abu Dhabi, an active figure in internal affairs in the Emirates and also in international communications, James Chiang, ”Father of Expo”, an important Sino-American personality and one of the fathers of Expo Shanghai 2010 and Ambassador Gustavo Moreno, former dignitary of the consulate of Milan and current Consul General of Argentina in Milan.

The Clubs first location is in Piazza Duomo 21 in Milan, a place dedicated to delegations from the participant countries in Universal Expos. A historical venue in the heart of Milan where Commissioners, Vice Commissioners, BIE Delegates, Pavilion Directors and Diplomats will be able to gather, organize meetings, press conferences, establish relationships with Italian institutions and companies that would like to present themselves and their products and services to the attending countries.

“The World Expo Commissioners Club – says Ayman Ibrahim Al Afifi, a founding member of WECC – provides a great occasion for establishing relationships among institutions and businessmen from all over the world and for sharing a multicultural network of innovative business solutions. We are glad to extend the ‘vision’ of the Club to the forthcoming Expo Dubai”.

The WECC plans to open new venues shortly, with the same high standard as the Milan headquarters, in Kazakhstan the location for the 2017 International Expo and in Dubai, awarded with hosting the 2020 Universal Expo.
The possibility of opening new venues in Turin, Venice and Florence is also being considered to help members discover the Italian territory and its opportunities.

“I warmly welcome the initiative of the World Expo Commissioners Club and I express my appreciation that Milan has been chosen as its first venue. I am certain that it will be a place to share and develop the common themes that the World Expo is offering to the entire world. A place that will live on even after 2015, ensuring that the experience gained in the six months of Expo 2015 will not go to waste but will endure. The theme “Feed the Planet, Energy for Life” is vital for all of us, and most of all for future generations” Giuliano Pisapia, Mayor of Milan.

“I am proud to endorse the partnership between ANCI – the National Association of Italian Municipalities and the World Expo Commissioners Club” affirms Piero Fassino, Mayor of Turin. “With Expo 2015, Milan and the entire Country will have visibility and a great opportunity to engage, share and learn from the rest of the world.
The World Expo Commissioners Club is an excellent means of improving all positive synergies generated by Expo Milano 2015, not only in these intense and exciting months, but especially for the new and even greater challenges that will arise after this experience. The City of Turin, which I am proud to represent, has fully engaged in the great adventure of Expo Milano 2015 by hosting a calendar rich with initiatives and events, with the aim of offering a warm and lively atmosphere to all the visitors that we will have the pleasure of welcoming. The possibility to host one of the venues of the World Expo Commissioners Club in Turin would be a further boost to the status of our city which is gaining more and more at international level.”

Private companies, institutions and local authorities have already joined the WECC, and its members already include a number of commissioners, vice commissioners, pavilion directors, representatives of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) and diplomats.

“It is a great honor and pleasure for me to accept the invitation to join the World Expo Commissioners Club” – said James Chiang, “Father of Expo” and one of the main protagonists of Sino-American relations involved in Chinese policies for economical reform and opening up to the western world. This initiative allows countries participating in Expos to benefit from the experience gained from previous Expos, by sharing “best practices” and learning to avoid the mistakes of the past.”

The WECC members are grouped into three categories: honorary, full and associate members. Membership does not expire.

“It could only be Milan, a city of great vision, that is leader in the foundation of an avant-garde international Club like this” said Alessandro Rosso, President of Alessandro Rosso Group and pro-tempore president of the WECC.- Universal Expos provide extraordinary occasions to promote the visibility of our country worldwide and to share ideas and experiences through a network of growing relationships”. “The WECC – Rosso affirmed – responds to this objective, its members are and will always be the best source of know-how for future events, in the wake of experience acquired in cities where Expos have already taken place”.

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