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Crisis has limited impact on Expo

Updated: 2009-03-09 13:53

The global economic downturn has had little impact on the 2010 Shanghai World Expo, despite some countries facing difficulties funding their national pavilions' construction, and the event could boost global confidence, organizers said.

"I'm sure all the countries participating in the World Expo would like to take this opportunity to improve their images and bolster national confidence," Shanghai World Expo Executive Committee director Wan Jifei said on the sidelines of the annual Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference session in Beijing.

"As the event's sponsor, China will try its best to provide participants all necessary support and help them cut costs," Wan said.

"So far, no country or organization has withdrawn from the event, although some may scale down their investments in their exhibition halls," he said.

A record-high of 231 countries and organizations have signed agreements and confirmed participation in the event. Of the 40 national pavilions, seven have already started construction with the rest to begin in the first half of this year, he said.

But it would be "fully understandable" if any country decided to back out during the deepening economic slowdown, he added.

An editorial of the People's Daily has called on China's top political advisory body to made due contributions to help the country weather through difficulties.