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Official Bids for Expo 2022 or
Expo 2023
Official Bids for Expo 2025
Potential Bids for Expo 2027 or
Expo 2028
Potential Bids for Expo 2030
Past Bids
The Bidding
Process
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ExpoMuseum.com  
     
Expo 2017: Astana World's Fair  
     
Expo 2020: Dubai World's Fair  
 
Past World's Fair Bids map
 
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Since 2000, the governing body of world's fairs, the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), has regularized how it awards expositions.

In years ending in "0" and "5," they allow for a "sanctioned" expo. Expo 2000, Expo 2005, and Expo 2010 were of this type. The planned Expo 2015 in Milan, Italy will also be this kind of exposition. They are the larger of the two types of world's fairs, analogous to the Summer Olympics. There are no size limitations for sanctioned world's fairs and many nations build their own stand-alone pavilions. Themes for these pavilions are fairly broad and typically have several smaller sub-themes.

In between each of these sanctioned world's fairs (but not in an adjacent year) there is the more modestly sized world's fair of the two. It can be thought of as analogous to the Winter Olympics. It is considered "recognized" by the BIE, meaning that it has a limited site size and national pavilions are usually exhibited in a modular system provided by the expo authorities. Themes for recognized expositions are far more specific than those of sanctioned expos. Expo 2008, Expo 2012, and the upcoming Expo 2017 in Astana, Kazkahstan follow this smaller model. It is generally thought that recognized expositions are ideal for smaller cities or cities in developing nations.
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Expo 2000 (sanctioned exposition)
 
 
Competing cities:
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Expo 2002, Expo 2004 (recognized exposition)
 
 
There was no world's fair held between Expo 2000 and Expo 2005. Kuala Lumpur was originally awarded Expo 2002, but bowed out. In 1997, Australia's Gold Coast was awarded the slot, but later government pressure cancelled their efforts.

Given these issues, the Paris suburb of Seine-Saint-Denis was awarded the right to host Expo 2004 despite the fact that the year was adjacent to that of Expo 2005's. A government change in 2002 prompted its cancellation.

Competing cities:
  • Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
    (proposed for 2002, initial winner)
  • Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
    (proposed for 2002, secondary winner)
  • Seine-Saint-Denis
    (proposed for 2004, tertiary winner)

News article about 2004 cancellation:
Images 2004 s'estompe au coeur de l'été

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Expo 2005 (sanctioned exposition)
 
 
Competing cities:
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Expo 2007 or Expo 2008 (recognized exposition)
 
 
Competing cities:
  • Zaragoza, Spain
    (proposed for 2008, winner)
  • Thessoloniki, Greece
    (proposed for 2007)
  • Trieste, Italy
    (proposed for 2008)
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Expo 2010 (sanctioned exposition)
 
 
Competing cities:
  • Shanghai, China
    (winner)
  • Querétaro, Mexico
  • Moscow, Russia
  • Wroclaw, Poland
  • Yeosu, South Korea
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Expo 2012 or Expo 2013 (recognized exposition)
 
 
Competing cities:
  • Yeosu, South Korea
    (proposed for 2012, winner)
  • Tangier, Morocco
    (proposed for 2012)
  • Wroclaw, Poland
    (proposed for 2012)
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Expo 2015 (sanctioned exposition)
 
 
Competing cities:

Toronto, Canada had initially planned to bid for Expo 2015 but pulled out for financial reasons.

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Expo 2017 or Expo 2018 (recognized exposition)
 
 
Competing cities:

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada had initially planned to bid for Expo 2017, but federal government refused to support a bid.

News article about Edmonton 2017 cancellation:
Feds Slam Door on City's Expo Bid

The government of New South Wales in Australia initially supported a bid for Newcastle but has stated it would focus on an Expo 2022. That bid appears not to be happening.

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Expo 2020 (sanctioned exposition)
 
 
 
Competing cities:
  • Dubai, United Arab Emirates
    (winner)
  • Ekaterinburg, Russia
    (eliminated in 3rd vote)
  • Izmir, Turkey
    (eliminated in 2nd vote)
  • Sao Paulo, Brazil
    (eliminated in 1st vote)

Ayutthaya, Thailand had originally placed a bid, but withdrew the bid before the vote.

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