Bureau of International Exhibitions
Bureau of International Exhibitions
- Headquartered in Paris, France, the International Bureau of
Exhibitions (BIE) was established in 1928 as the international treaty
organization to sanction and monitor international exhibitions of long
duration (over three weeks) and significant scale. As of October 2012, the membership of the BIE
included 161 signatory nations. The bureau currently handles a schedule
of 4 major events per decade; the large scale "registered" world expos
on the 0 and 5 year of the decade, whose bidding begins 9 years prior
to the date in question, and two smaller scale "recognized" world
expos, one held during the 1,2,3, or 4 years of a decade and the 2nd on
the 6,7,8, or 9 year of a decade.
The two main criteria that distinguish between registered and
recognized events are that recognized events are limited to 3 months in
duration and 62 acres (25 hectares) in size. The large scale
"registered" event can be on a universal or special theme scale,
depending on the wishes of the organizers. The last "registered"
exposition was Expo 2010 in Shanghai, China. The last small scale
"recognized" event was Expo 2012 held in Yoesu, South Korea. The
Bureau also sanctions the highest caliber international garden
expositions (those with A1 status) of the Association of Horticultural
Producers (AIPH). An example of this type of event was Royal
Flora Ratchaphreuk 2006-7 held in Chiang Mai, China and Floridade 2012. Most decades
see three events of A1 status recognized by the AIPH and BIE.
Events on the Horizon -
- Presently Sanctioned: World Expo 2015 (BIE Registered Event
with Special Characteristics). Milan, Italy won the right to host Expo
2015 during a vote on March 31, 2008. This large scale "registered"
exposition will be held in Milan, Italy after the the final vote in the
143rd session of the General Assembly saw Milan gain a majority of the
votes among 151 voting member nations. May 1 to October 31, 2015.
Upcoming Bids -
Upcoming Bids -
- Expo 2017, Expo 2020: World
Expo 2017 (BIE Recognized Event, Small Scale
Exposition, with Special Characteristics) and World Expo 2020 (BIE
Registered Large Scale Exposition with Universal Characteristics). The
bidding process for the next recognized event in 2017 will culminate in
the selection of the host city in December 2012 between Aksana,
Kazakhstan and Liege, Belgium. The
next large scale registered exhibition, 2020, which were submitted nine
years prior to their opening day with other candidates wishing to
challenge a bid doing so within one year of the first submission for
each event, are now in and under review. They include Dubai, UAE; Ayutthaya, Thailland; Izmir, Turkey; Sao Paulo, Brazil; and Ekaterinburg, Russia.
Expo 2022, Expo 2025: Bidding for the next round
of candidates, after selection of the host cities above, can begin five
years prior to the small "recognized" small scale event in 2022, and
nine years prior to the next "registered" large scale event in 2025.
Current U.S.A. Status
- As of May 2002, the U.S.A. withdrew from the Bureau
of International Exhibitions. This does not preclude hosting
or participation in
B.I.E. events, however, hosting would be difficult to achieve without
membership status due to voting procedures, and participation is more
costly for non-member states. In the past several years, several cities within
U.S.A. have made inquiries into potential hosting (New York, Atlanta,
Phoenix, San Francisco among them), however, it is imperative for those efforts,
if they are to succeed, to change this stance.
If you are
interested in joining the effort to change the stance within the United
States toward the Bureau of International Exhibitions, please contact
your U.S. Representative and Senator. Participation in the
is controlled by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee; while
coordination of a U.S. hosting arrangement is under the auspices of
both the U.S. Commerce Department and the U.S. State Department.
Recent staffing changes and the successful participation of
the United States at Expo 2005 in Nagoya, Japan and Shanghai, China in Expo 2020 have begun to change
minds within some departments of the U.S. government. A privately funded and run effort has just completed hosting the
United States pavilion at Expo 2012 in Yoesu, South Korea.
The expenses incurred to participate in international
currently prohibited to come from general U.S. treasury revenues and
must be fundraised from private sources. Membership for nations in the
B.I.E. costs approximately $35,000 per year.
U.S. involvement in international expositions began in 1851 with the
first world's fair in London, England and continued unabated until our
withdrawal from our commitment to participate in Expo 2000 in Hanover,
Germany. The United States also did
not participate in Expo 2008 in Zargosa, Spain.
For links to the BIE
and other upcoming Expo sources, visit our links page.
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Reports for Expo 2008 Zaragosa (Post) and Expo 2010 (Post) Shanghai now available.