Your Highness, Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence and Commissioner General of Expo 2020 Dubai, and Other Distinguished Guests, Good Afternoon!
Even though my country is half a world away, across the ocean, on our National Day here in Dubai at Expo 2020, I hope I am permitted to say, “Welcome To The Bahamas”!
We consider Expo fundamentally to be about the relationship between the peoples of the world, the promotion of friendship and co-operation through culture, and the unyielding capacity of human beings to pursue a higher order of civilization, through innovation and adaptation.
It is a chance for countries to get to know each other better or perhaps, introduce themselves to each other for the first time.
Many Bahamians here in Dubai have been surprised at how many people have never heard of The Bahamas.Our presence and participation are opportunities for both friendship and tourism.
We want you to come and visit: to stay awhile, and experience how life can still indeed be ‘Better in The Bahamas’.
And as you get to know us, we relish the opportunity for us to get to know you!
At Expo, each of us wants to show the best of us!
For small countries such as The Bahamas, it is sometimes difficult for our voices to be heard on the world stage.
But we know that when we sing and dance and fully express our creative, cultural identity, we make a much bigger splash in the global imagination.
And in turn, we know that it is also a chance for us to see others, to listen to them, and to learn.
By building friendships, by exploring joint opportunities, and by working together to overcome the great global challenges of these times, this is how the ‘Spirit of Expo’ is kindled and will continue.
This is what happens when we get to know the best of each other.
Whether it is an investment in a growing technological future, or acting jointly to address the existential challenges of climate change, for each of us here, for all of us around the world, we can be certain that we are all in this together!
We are very grateful and proud that so many Bahamians have been able to attend this Bahamas National Day at Expo.
It is thanks to the ongoing support of our hosts, the Government of the United Arab Emirates, that I am also able to share in this day.
I pray that for all Bahamians who have joined us here, and those following our journey back home, this marvellous achievement at Expo will help us all to see things anew, to have our imaginations expanded, to have our tolerances strengthened, and to have a life-changing, once-in-a-lifetime experience of other cultures that we will talk about for the rest of our lives!
The technology and other innovations on display are breathtaking.
The immersive cultural experiences, so very stimulating.
And the sense of feeling and the possibilities inspired so boundless, that, as I gaze out at the multitude of faces and races, I sense that the bonds of our great human family have already strengthened.
As part of the ‘Sustainability’ section of Expo, our Commonwealth joins hands with the nations and people of the world, fully optimistic that we can make all our tomorrows, better than our yesterdays!
Once again, I am deeply grateful to the Government and People of the United Arab Emirates for their generous support and look forward to our continuing friendship and partnership.
Happy “Bahamas National Day” Expo!