Yeosu Expo Kicks Off with Grand Gala Opening [25-05-2012]
The opening ceremony was highlighted by gala performances by soprano Jo Sumi, Pansori diva Ahn Sook-sun, and young K-pop idols such as IU, Big Bang, and 2NE1. It also featured an ocean fountain event and a hologram show. Throughout the expo, which will last 93 days until August 12, 104 countries and 10 international organizations will stage exhibitions.

“Just as Vancouver grew as a world-class city after the expo it hosted in 1986, Yeosu and the southern coast will be reborn as a world-class tourist resort,” President Lee said during a radio broadcast on May 14. “I believe the Yeosu Expo will be successful amid keen interest from the people and with their cooperation. More importantly, this is a golden chance to publicize the beauty of the southern coast,” he added.

The ocean-themed Yeosu Expo is being held on a site adjacent to the ocean, overlooking Hallyeosudo Marine National Park and many islands. It lays focus on finding ways to address dangers threatening seas and coasts and restore sustainable life to marine environments. In a bid to promote a new level of international cooperation and peaceful use of the seas, the Yeosu Declaration, which is expected to be issued at the end of the expo, will propose a post-Kyoto vision.

The organizers set strategic goals to make it “Green Exposition,” “Ubiquitous Exposition,” “Design Exposition,” and “Cultural Exposition.” Meanwhile, “OCEANS’ 12 MTS/IEEE Yeosu,” a massive international conference on ocean science and technology, will be held at The Ocean Resort in the city for four days from May 21 to 24.
The conference will be attended by about 500 participants from 35 countries, including experts from the Marine Technology Society, the IEEE Oceanic Engineering Society, and the Korean Association of Ocean Science and Technology Societies.

The expo’s organizers reportedly spent about $1.8 billion constructing a high-tech 250,000-square-meter venue over the last four and a half years. Yeosu Expo is the second international expo Korea has ever hosted since 1993, when it hosted the Daejeon Expo at Daedeok Science Park for 93 days from August 7 to November 7, 1993.