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Leadax & Shell on participating in Expo2020

We spoke to Leadax CEO Roeland van Delden & Shell UAE chairman Ali Al-Janabi on why they decided to join the Dutch participation to Expo 2020 in Dubai. 

Why are you participating in Expo2020?

Shell: Our Expo partnership with the Netherlands is a natural fit, due to Shell’s Dutch heritage. The Netherlands pavilion design comprises a unique circular climate system… a “biotope” that unites water, energy and food. Through our participation, we aim to bring in thought leadership and to inspire our partners and visitors alike through diverse talks and workshops about the crucial importance of more and cleaner energy in powering progress around the world.  

Leadax: For us, it is the perfect opportunity to introduce the world to our latest disruptive and circular innovation: the world’s most sustainable roofing.

What will you be contributing to Expo2020?

Leadax: On the one hand, we are waterproofing the Dutch pavilion with our roof covering and lead substitute. On the other hand, we will be inviting our worldwide network to our own symposium at the pavilion. The theme here is “Circularity & Profitability in Construction”.

Shell: We will bring to life our latest Shell scenarios, a pioneering tool developed by Shell which we have used for decades to help us understand potential socio-economic developments in society and the impact these developments could have. We will host events and discussions with a number of Shell’s leaders to debate our company’s role in reconfiguring and developing lower-carbon energy systems.

Which Expo2020 Pavilion will you be visiting first?

Leadax: For us, the UAE – hosting country – pavilion looks very interesting. I expect them to be making quite an impression. In addition to that, I have been doing business in the Emirates for decades, hence why I’m more involved and particularly drawn by this pavilion.

Shell: Last year, Shell announced its partnership with the Kingdom of the Netherlands pavilion as a national partner and last week we announced our partnership with the United Kingdom pavilion as a supporting partner, we are excited to visit both pavilions and see their iconic design that merge nature and architecture . 

Throughout the Expo site, the architecture is bold, enterprising and progressive. Like the UAE pavilion which is a majestic falcon in flight or the iconic Tera pavilion that has been built to be net zero for both energy and water, or even the Singapore pavilion where architecture and nature intertwine together. And at the heart of Expo is the iconic dome structure of Al Wasl Plaza connecting the three-district representing sustainability, opportunity and mobility. We simply can’t wait to visit them all. 

Which Expo2020 innovation or sustainable solution are you curious about?

Leadax: To be fair, the entire World Expo as a concept makes me curious. What is being realized there is unprecedented – compared to what has been realized in the past.

Shell: In line with the three key Expo subthemes of opportunity, mobility and sustainability, we aim to connect with changemakers & innovators who are having a measurable impact on people’s lives and the planet, and we look forward to engage with industry experts, energy producers and governments on renewable energy solutions on a global-levelled platform. 


Who would you like to have a “connecting mind” moment with, during Expo2020?

Shell: With inspiring stories to unlock and new ideas to uncover, we aim to connect and create opportunities for youth through our STEM education programs like Shell Eco Marathon and NXplorers which we will bring to life as one of our major events during the Expo, These educational initiatives will help young people gain important new skills through science, technology, engineering and mathematics projects. 

Leadax: We’d love that with Sheikh Zayed from Abu Dhabi. His vision to make the Emirates the country of the future is very impressive to see!

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