Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird.
Canada announced its decision on Tuesday to support Dubai in its bid to host the Expo 2020.
Dubai will be the first city in the Middle East to host a World Expo if it wins the bid.
“Canada’s support for Dubai reflects our commitment to the dynamism, hope and future of emerging economies in the region and beyond,” said John Baird, Canada’s foreign affairs minister in a statement.
“Dubai is best placed to bring together the most diverse group of peoples from around the world, to share ideas, aspirations, and concrete solutions for the future.”
Ed Fast, Canada’s minister of international trade, said that Canadian businesses are eager to strengthen their trade ties with the local market.
“By supporting Dubai Expo 2020, we are showing our UAE partners that Canada is committed to taking our relationship to new heights which will create new opportunities for people in both countries,” Fast said.
The Canadian government’s official statement added that the Expo should be rightly held in Dubai, one of the most connected cities in the world.
Official data showed that the UAE is also home to over 100 major Canadian companies, and approximately 40,000 Canadians live and work in the emirates.
“Our bilateral relations with Canada have gone from strength to strength in recent years and the Canadian endorsement of Dubai’s expo bid is the most recent evidence of this very positive trajectory,” said Sultan Al Mansouri, UAE’s minister of economy.
Dubai is competing with Izmir (Turkey), Sau Paulo (Brazil) and Ekaterinburg (Russia) for the rights to host the Expo 2020.
As the date for the announcement of the winning city draws near, Dubai has garnered support from key global figures like Bill Gates, London Mayor Boris Johnson and former French president Nicholas Sarkozy for its bid to host the Expo.
UAE-Canada relations have also been on the mend with the country reinstating a visa waiver for Canadian passport holders earlier this year.
The UAE had withdrawn a visa waiver for Canadian citizens more than two years ago after a dispute over landing rights. Canadians were charged $1,000 for a six-month multiple entry visa, while a one-month visa cost $250 dollars.