Visitors flock to CIIE National Pavilion

2019-11-14

The National Exhibition and Convention Center (NECC) was overwhelmed by enthusiastic crowds to the extended exhibition of National Pavilion of the China International Import Expo on Wednesday.


Reservations are currently closed, and about 400,000 people have already booked a visit to the pavilion.


Although the expo venue opened at 9:30am, many visitors came hours earlier to line up outside the pavilion despite a chilly morning drizzle.


Visitors flock to CIIE National Pavilion
Visitors line up at an escalator leading to the National Pavilion on Wednesday morning.


“The exhibition has limited visitors of about 50,000 per day,” an official at the pavilion told Shanghai Daily. “We are expecting large visitor flows every day during the extended exhibition.”


Zhai Jun, a post-graduate student from Nankai University, booked a visit weeks ago with his girlfriend.


“The weekend was soon fully booked so we decided to come on the first day, and then spend another day or two in Shanghai to walk around,” said Zhai. “We expected large crowds, but more people are interested in the expo than I thought.”


The most popular booth in the National Pavilion was undoubtedly the China booth. A flight simulator for the C919 aircraft, the deep-sea submarine Shenhai Yongshi, and a model of the Fuxing high-speed train were all surrounded by people taking pictures and videos.


Visitors flock to CIIE National Pavilion
The China booth in the National Pavilion was packed by visitors taking pictures on Wednesday as the extended exhibition of the CIIE kicked off.


Lu Shundi and her neighbors from Hunan Road Subdistrict in Xuhui District got up at 6am to visit the pavilion. She told Shanghai Daily that they had long been looking forward to the exhibition.


“We often go square-dancing together,” said Lu. “This expo is something so important for China and it is happening at our doorstep, how can we miss it!”


Other national booths were also packed. The Greece booth set up a small cinema where documentaries introducing the country’s landscape and traditions drew many visitors.


The Portugal booth set up a window frame behind which was a picture of the Cathedral of Porto, one of the iconic sights of the country.


Visitors flock to CIIE National Pavilion
Visitors take pictures at a window frame full of Portuguese flavor at the National Pavilion.


Pan Xianbiao, a retiree from COMAC, which developed China's first-ever self-designed and built wide-body passenger jet C919, told Shanghai Daily he came to the convention center one day ahead so that he wouldn’t be lost today.


“I felt so proud when I saw the C919 simulator,” he said. “Though I don’t work for the company anymore, I’m glad to see the legacy of my generation passed on.”


Pan said the expo is setting a good example for the world to maintain communication.


“You have to first communicate with people before you talk about collaboration,” Pan said of the expo. “What’s better than an expo to bring so many people from so many countries together?”


By 11am, East Xujing Station of Metro Line 2, the closest Metro station to the expo venue, recorded 11,813 people entering and 25,869 leaving. Chen Li, station chief at East Xujing, said the number of passengers was almost doubled compared with a normal workday.


Shanghai Metro said passenger flows again surged after 1pm as many visitors finished their tour in the National Pavilion. By 4pm, more than 73,000 people came and left the station.


Visitors flock to CIIE National Pavilion
An image of the CCTV camera at exit 4 of East Xujing Station of Metro Line 2 at 1:16pm on Wednesday. Visitors start to leave the expo venue in packs.


Apart from the National Pavilion, the intangible cultural heritage booths and the NECC store also attracted many people.


Staff members at the store told Shanghai Daily that the most popular souvenir was a brooch in the shape of a four-leave clover, which is also the shape of the NECC.


“The brooches were sold out and new stock will arrive on Friday,” a staffer said. “Each visitor can buy only one brooch.”


The extended exhibition will remain until November 20. Officials say that only those who made reservations in advance will be allowed into the National Pavilion.


Visitors flock to CIIE National Pavilion


The countdown to the next China International Import Expo has already begun.



Source: SHINE

Editor: Yang Meiping


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