Bureau International des Expositions

The Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) is the intergovernmental organization in charge of overseeing and regulating World Expos, also known as World's Fairs. Since 1931.
  1. The Organisers of Horticultural Expo 2019 Beijing presented a progress report to the 162nd General Assembly of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), which took place on 14-15 November 2017 in Paris. 

    Delegates of BIE Member States were presented with an extensive progress report on the preparation work for the next Horticultural Expo, including updates on participation and further details on the key features of the Expo site.

    Wang Jinzhen, the Commissioner General of Expo 2019 

    After presenting a film demonstrating the progress made on the Expo site, Wang Jinzhen, the Commissioner General of Expo 2019, told delegates that “great strides” have been made in preparations for the Expo. Mr. Wang announced that nearly 70 countries and international organisations have already confirmed participation in Expo 2019 Beijing, and encouraged delegates of other countries to confirm in the near future.

    The Vice-Mayor of Beijing, Lu Yan 

    Representing the host city, the Vice-Mayor of Beijing, Lu Yan, emphasised the importance of Expo 2019 to his city and to China. He told delegates that the “Live Green, Live Better” theme will demonstrate China’s efforts “to strengthen the development of an ecological civilization and build green industry.” In doing so, the Expo will be a platform for participants to share horticultural experiences and to promote cultural exchange.

     Deputy Secretary General of the China Flower Association, Peng Hongming 

    The Deputy Secretary General of the China Flower Association, Peng Hongming, presented delegates with further details about the development of the Expo site, international promotion of the event, and the planned participation of more than 30 Chinese provinces, regions and cities. Ms. Peng indicated that more than half of landscape engineering and infrastructure works are completed, and that construction is underway on the China Pavilion, the International Pavilion, and the Life Experience Pavilion.

    Regarding the exhibits, Ms. Peng announced plans to feature collections of gardens from innovative global designers, as well as practical demonstrations that integrate the latest horticultural technologies. As such, the next Horticultural Expo will be an “exceptional, splendid and memorable feast of horticulture.”

  2. Two months after closing its gates to the public, representatives of Expo 2017 Astana addressed the 162nd General Assembly of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) to give a report of the Expo and the impact it has had on Kazakhstan.

    The Chairman of the Astana Expo 2017 National Company, Akhmetzhan Yessimov, declared that “Expo 2017 has become a lively page in the history of our country.” He informed delegates that 3.97 million visitors attended the Expo during its three-month run, surpassing the expected number of 2 million. This success is matched by other key indicators: Kazakhstan’s GDP increased by 4.3% in the first nine months of 2017, while the number of tourist visits to Astana increased 1.5 times compared to the same period in the previous year.

    Regarding the legacy of Expo 2017 Astana, Mr. Yessimov indicated that the city already benefits from the new airport terminal and railway station that opened in the run-up to the Expo. The Expo site itself is already transitioning to the post-Expo phase, with the iconic Nur Alem sphere – home of the Kazakhstan Pavilion and Museum of Future Energy – having reopened to the public on 11 November, alongside the Best Practices Area, the two Thematic Pavilions and the Art Centre.


    In his presentation, Expo Commissioner Rapil Zhoshybayev thanked the BIE and international participants for the success of the Expo. Delegates heard that as a result of the Expo, a visa-free travel regime has been introduced for 62 countries, as well as the launch of direct flights to four new countries.

    Mr. Zhoshybayev also pointed to the major international meetings that took place within the framework of the Expo, including the first summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation on science and technology, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit and the “Women for Energy of the Future” forum.

    D. Kerkentzes accepts the Order of Friendship from A. Yessimov on behalf of Secretary General Vicente G. Loscertales 

    On the occasion of the General Assembly, Mr. Yessimov presented Vicente G. Loscertales, Secretary General of the BIE, with the Order of Friendship of Kazakhstan on behalf of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev. The award – a Dostyk Order of the 2nd degree – was accepted on Mr. Loscertales’ behalf by Dimitri Kerkentzes, Deputy Secretary General.

  3. The Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) held its 162nd General Assembly in Paris on 14-15 November 2017. Delegates representing the 170 Member States of the BIE attended the meeting.

    The General Assembly featured reports by Organisers of past and upcoming Expos, as well as the formal recognition of Floriade Expo 2022 Amsterdam-Almere and the flag handing-over ceremony. The meeting was also an opportunity for the Triennale di Milano to develop on its plans for the 22nd edition of the exhibition, and for candidates for World Expo 2025 and Specialised Expo 2022/23 to present their bid projects to delegates. This was followed by the election of the host country for Specialised Expo 2022/23, and by elections for the Presidency of the BIE General Assembly as well as for its committees.

    World Expos

    Manal Albayat, the Senior Vice President of Expo 2020 Dubai, presented delegates with a progress report for the next World Expo. Following the second International Participants Meeting (IPM) in October 2017, Ms. Albayat informed delegates that 150 countries have already confirmed participation in the Expo. The Expo’s physical legacy project – District 2020 – was presented to the General Assembly, as well as updates of Organisers’ engagement programmes including Expo Live.

    Manal Albayat, Senior Vice President of Expo 2020 Dubai 

    Concerning the bidding process for the following World Expo, due to take place in 2025, France (Greater Paris), Japan (Osaka), Russia (Ekaterinburg) and Azerbaijan (Baku) each presented their bid projects. These presentations come after the submission of the bid dossiers, and before the Enquiry Missions, which will be carried out in early 2018.

    Specialised Expos

    Following the closing ceremony of Specialised Expo 2017 Astana on 10 September, Expo Commissioner Rapil Zhoshybayev and Chairman Akhmetzhan Yessimov presented delegates with an overview of the Expo and the impact it has had in Kazakhstan. Describing the Expo as “a lively page in the history of our country”, Mr. Yessimov thanked all participating countries, commissioners and the BIE for contributing to its success.

    Expo 2017 Astana Commissioner, Rapil Zhoshybayev  

    Regarding the next Specialised Expo, the three candidates (Poland, the United States and Argentina) gave their final presentation to delegates before Member States voted for the host country.

    Horticultural Expos

    Delegates were presented with a report from the Organisers of Horticultural Expo 2019 Beijing, represented by the Commissioner General of the Expo, Wang Jinzhen, the Deputy Mayor of Beijing, Lu Yan, and the Deputy Secretary of the China Flower Association, Peng Hongming. Mr. Wang stated that “great strides” have been made in preparing the Expo site since the 161st General Assembly, and Mr. Lu told the General Assembly that the Expo will be a “platform allowing China and countries from across the world to engage in dialogue and pragmatic cooperation in the construction of ecological civilization.”

    Deputy Mayor of Beijing, Lu Yan 

    The General Assembly granted formal recognition to Floriade Expo 2022 Amsterdam-Almere, the next International Horticultural Exhibition to take place after Expo 2019 Beijing. The seventh Horticultural Expo to be organised in the Netherlands will take place between 28 April and 23 October 2022 under the theme “Growing Green Cities.” To mark this step, the Mayor of Almere, Franc Weerwind, and the General Director of Floriade Expo 2022, Jannewietske de Vries, received the BIE flag in the presence of the Ambassador of the Netherlands to France, H.E. Pieter de Gooijer.  

    Delegation from the Netherlands receiving the BIE flag 

    Triennale di Milano

    Following a presentation at the 161st General Assembly, the Director General of the Triennale di Milano Andrea Cancellato informed delegates that the final theme chosen for the 22nd edition is “Broken Nature: Design Takes on Human Survival”, and indicated that the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs has requested formal recognition by the BIE. The General Curator of the 22nd Triennale di Milano, Paola Antonelli, stated that the aim of the next edition would be to highlight design approaches that can “replenish our exchange with the natural context we were born in.”

    General Curator of the 22nd Triennale di Milano, Paola Antonelli 


    To determine the host country of Specialised Expo 2022/23, Member States voted in two rounds, via secret ballot, after hearing presentations from the three candidates. Argentina and Poland received 46 votes each in the first round, while the United States received 25 votes. In the second round, Argentina was elected host country of Specialised Expo 2023 with 62 votes compared to 56 for Poland.


    Elections were also held to the Presidency of the General Assembly of the BIE, and to determine the composition of each of the BIE’s four Committees, as well as their respective chairpersons. Steen Christensen (Denmark) was re-elected as President of the General Assembly for a second two-year term. H.E. Jai-chul Choi (Republic of Korea) was re-elected Chairman of the Executive Committee, Alain Berger (France) was re-elected Chairman of the Rules Committee, and H.E. Albina Pereira Africano (Angola) was re-elected Chairwoman of the Administration and Budget Committee. H.E. Murat Ersavci (Turkey) was elected Chairman of the Information and Communication Committee, replacing outgoing Chairman H.E. Claude Cottalorda (Monaco).

    Each term lasts for two years, and one Member State may serve up to two terms on the same Committee. The full list of the members of each Committee can be accessed here.

    More news to follow on all presentations made at the 162nd General Assembly.

  4. Member States of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) today elected Argentina as host country of Specialised Expo 2023.


    After two rounds of voting during the BIE’s 162nd General Assembly, a majority of Member States voted for Argentina’s project to organise the next Specialised Expo in Buenos Aires under the theme “Science, Innovation, Art and Creativity for Human Development. Creative Industries in Digital Convergence” between 15 January and 15 April 2023.

    “This is an exciting moment for Argentina and marks the start of a fruitful and transformational journey for Buenos Aires”, declared the Deputy Secretary General of the BIE, Dimitri Kerkentzes. He added: “the Expo project, based around the creative opportunities offered by the digital era, has captured the minds of the international community, and we now look forward to seeing it come to life over the next six years.”

    Three countries were in the running to host the next Specialised Expo. Poland was bidding for a Specialised Expo in the city of Łódź under the theme “City Re:Invented.” The United States was bidding for a Specialised Expo in Minnesota under the theme “Healthy People, Healthy Planet: Wellness and Well Being for All.”

    Representatives of eligible and present Member States elected the host country in a secret ballot using electronic voting. As no candidate received the two-thirds majority required to win in the first round, Argentina and Poland moved into a second round, where a simple majority of votes cast is required.

    First round results

    Poland - 46

    United States - 25

    Argentina – 46

    Abstentions – 1

    Second round results

    Poland – 56

    Argentina – 62

    Abstentions - 0

    Specialised Expos, known officially as International Recognised Exhibitions, can be organised in the interval between two World Expos, and are designed to respond to a precise challenge facing humanity. The most recent Specialised Expo gathered 4 million visitors between 10 June and 10 September 2017 in Astana, Kazakhstan, under the theme “Future Energy.”

  5. The 162nd General Assembly of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) has formally recognised Floriade Expo 2022 Amsterdam-Almere as an International Horticultural Exhibition

    The formal recognition, approved by Member States of the BIE, was followed by the ceremonial handing of the BIE flag to Franc Weerwind, Mayor of Almere, and Jannewietske de Vries, General Director of Floriade Expo 2022, in the presence of the Ambassador of the Netherlands to France, Pieter de Gooijer.

    Presenting the Expo project to delegates, the Mr. Weerwind indicated that “Floriade Expo 2022 will focus on the change from Garden City to Green City … we want to share ideas and develop innovations on a joint basis with regard to the liveable city of the future.”

    The Deputy Secretary General of the BIE, Dimitri Kerkentzes, commented: “Floriade Expo 2022 will be the seventh BIE-recognised Horticultural Expo in the Netherlands, a country that leads the way in promoting the green city concept. We now look forward to the Expo project coming to life as the Netherlands invites official participants.”

    Floriade Expo 2022 will be held on a 60-hectare site in Almere, located within the Amsterdam metropolitan area in the Netherlands, between 28 April and 23 October 2022. It is being organised under the theme “Growing Green Cities”, with its four subthemes being Green, Food, Health and Energy. The Organisers of the Expo aim to address how the green city concept can be expressed and how urban challenges like feeding the city, improving the health of citizens, ensuring enough green space and reducing energy consumption will be tackled.

    Starting with Floriade Expo 1960 in Rotterdam, the BIE has recognised 22 International Horticultural Exhibitions. The aim of Horticultural Expos is to promote and support a more harmonious relationship between people and nature. The gardens exhibited at these Expos reflect the cooperation, goodwill and commitment of the international community to protect, preserve and enhance the diversity and promises of nature.

    The most recent Horticultural Expo gathered over 4.5 million visitors in Antalya, Turkey, in 2016. The next Horticultural Expo will take place in Beijing, China, between 29 April and 7 October 2019, under the theme “Live Green, Live Better.”

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