Odesa, Ukraine is among the cities shortlisted to host the World EXPO at the end of this decade.
Ukraine's president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, said he believed hosting the global exhibition, which dates back to the mid-19th century and the first international showcase in London, could greatly aid reconstruction efforts in light of Russia's invasion.
In the opinion of the organisers, the World Expo is an opportunity for nations to create "fleeting miniature worlds", buzzing with future tech, arts and displays that foster a cultural dialogue with international peers.
Odesa's EXPO 2030 bid would deliver four pavilions for showcasing innovation, a show floor that would span 80,000 square metres in addition to the main Expo conference centre. The theme for the proposed event is "Renaissance. Technology. Future".
Ukrainian organisers say reconstruction and sustainability would be key themes; after the event has been concluded, they propose to let participants donate their pavilion's components to Ukrainian kindergartens, schools or medical clinics.
The donated modules would be transported via Odesa's port on the Dnipro river by barge, enabling them to reach much of Ukraine.
Odesa's architectural masterplan was designed by UK-based Zaha Hahid Architects, previously responsible for designs on the Heydar Aliyev Centre in Baku, Azerbaijan.
In Baku, the architects sought to create modern designs inspired by Azeri culture to diverge from the countless Soviet-era modernist buildings found across the city.
EXPO's organiser BIE Paris will decide which city will host in 2030. Odesa will be competing with Rome as well as Busan, South Korea and Riyadh in Saudi Arabia. The next expo in 2025 will be held in Osaka, Japan.
Zelenskyy, speaking by video call to BIE's 171st general assembly on November 29th, added: “This year, Ukraine became the global example of courage. Billions of people on all continents saw, what it means for Ukrainians to be unbreakable, and why Russian terror will not achieve its goal. And you will see how Ukraine will become an example of reconstruction.
"In 2030, when Ukrainian reconstruction will show significant planned results, you will see what humanity can do in Ukraine when all nations cooperate for peace and safety, development and a comfortable future for all people.
"And this is actually the fundamental meaning of world expos, so our country's reality and the expo's spirit will greatly align.”