The 2016 Horticultural Expo, which has “Flowers and Children” as its theme, officially opened today in the Turkish city of Antalya. The opening ceremony took place at the Expo site in Aksu, in the presence of the Secretary General of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), Vicente G. Loscertales, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and the President of the International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH), Bernard Oosterom.
Ministers and ambassadors were among those who took part in the official opening, which included the raising of the flags of all participant countries. The event served to kick start Expo 2016 before it opens its gates to the public tomorrow, on 23 April. Over 1 million tickets have already been sold, with Expo organisers expecting 8 million visitors over its six-month duration.
The ceremony included speeches by President Erdoğan, the Secretary General of the BIE Vicente G. Loscertales, Bernard Oosterom and members of the Turkish Government. Attendees also visited the Country Gardens and Expo Peony Terrace for the Expo’s opening show. The multi-sensory spectacle took place on the Expo Lake, and included sound, light, water and dance shows.
“I am confident that the Expo will prove to be a star attraction in Antalya over the next six months, with people travelling from all over the world to visit, and that it will provide a lasting legacy to citizens and tourists in the years to come”, commented Vicente G. Loscertales. The Secretary General of the BIE added that the involvement of children in the Expo will “inspire the next generation to support sustainable development and strengthen ecological consciousness”. Over 50 international participants are present at the Antalya Horticultural Expo 2016.