Works started on the Belgian pavilion at World Expo in Osaka

Works started on the Belgian pavilion at World Expo in Osaka
Credit: Belexpo

Works started this week on the Belgian pavilion for the 2025 World Expo in Osaka, Japan which will take place for six months starting in April. The Belgian building is designed to symbolise water in all its forms.

The Public Buildings Administration and the Belgian Commissariat-General for International Exhibitions (BelExpo) laid the foundation stone ceremony for the construction of the Belgian pavilion at the Belgian plot at Yumeshima, Osaka. The general theme of the expo is "Designing Future Society for Our Lives" and consists of three sub-themes: "Saving Lives", "Empowering Lives" and "Connecting Lives".

"Our pavilion testifies to Belgium's commitment to innovation, technical progress and research. We look forward to making meaningful contacts through this global platform, sharing our achievements and contributing to the collective dialogue on shaping a better future for all," said Pieter De Crem, Commissioner-General.

Credit: Bel Expo/Sébastien Stocq

The more than 150 participating countries are called on to showcase their best practices, innovations and solutions to shape a better world for future generations.

Diverse and dynamic

The Belgian pavilion's design was unveiled on 18 July 2023. It was the very first country that had received a temporary building permit and had also appointed a Japanese contractor for the project.

It envisages that the building will interpret the "Saving Lives" theme, designed as a representation of humanity, composed of water and cells, both with its shape and its internal structure.

Once finished, the Belgian Pavilion aims to offer visitors an engaging experience that reflects Belgium's diverse and dynamic identity and will include interactive exhibits highlighting technological advances as well as immersive displays showcasing its achievements.

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The end of the works is scheduled for April 2025, just before the start of the exhibition, which will take place from 13 April 2025 to 13 October 2025.

The pavilion will cost almost €10 million and is financed by BelExpo with grants from the Federal Government and the regions and communities, meaning the taxpayer is paying a hefty sum towards the building.

The last Belgian pavilion at the 2020 World Expo in Dubai, which cost €13 million in tax-payers money, was widely criticised as an embarrassing representation of the country. Complaints mainly focussed on the content, not the design, with people arguing it presented a clichéd and old-fashioned image of Belgium.

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