On 27 November, Latvia celebrated its National Day at EXPO 2020 Dubai. The day started with a formal opening, which was proceeded by the Latvia-UAE Business Forum, bilateral meetings and a reception organised in honour of the Visit of President of Latvia Egils Levits to Dubai. Part of the event was also a special culture programme.
The National Day started with opening addresses by Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture, Youth, and Community Development of the UAE, and Egils Levits, President of Latvia. The event continued with a concert by Intars Busulis, the Abonementa orchestra, Asnāte Rancāne and Aurēlija Rancāne both in Latvian and Arabic languages. The artists performed a song, ‘Allah, Dar el Zayed’, which honours the principal driving force behind the formation of the United Arab Emirates. The performance was a special musical greeting to the UAE’s 50th anniversary.
The central event of the day was the Latvia-UAE Business Forum organised by the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA) and the Ministry of Economics of Latvia. According to LIAA Director General Kaspars Rožkalns, Latvia is on its way to digital transformation and directs its focus to investments in smart specialisation sectors. “Our goal is to double the exports from Latvia by 2027, and this can be achieved only by changing the way we work. With the growing importance of technology, we are ready to provide state support to facilitate the transformation and our competitiveness. FDI also play a significant role here, and we have found a mutually beneficial cooperation model with the UAE”, says Kaspars Rožkalns. The Business Forum will feature a discussion on digital transformation with the participation of Martin Gauss, President and CEO of ‛Air Baltic Corporation, Artūrs Pielēns-Pelēns, International Business Development Director at ‛Squalio Group’, and Jānis Ošlejs, CEO of ‛Primekssʼ.
A Memorandum of Understanding between LIAA and the International Investors council of UAE was also signed during the event. The document facilitates mutual investment attraction and a better understanding of the investment environment both in the UAE and Latvia.
The National Day was made even more special with a light show at Al Wasl Plaza and the official reception.