The first foreign company to become a partner of the World Expo 2010 Shanghai is General Motors (GM) Corporation. GM and Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. Group (SAIC) have signed an agreement with the World Expo 2010 Shanghai Executive Committee to become the event's exclusive "automotive partner".
"GM is pleased at becoming the first multinational company to join with a local company as a partner of World Expo 2010 Shanghai," said Nick Reilly, GM Group vice president and president of GM Asia Pacific.
The two automakers have agreed to jointly provide products and services related to automobiles including hire cars and vehicle maintenance. GM and SAIC operate seven joint ventures in China.
The Shanghai World Expo has four other global partners: China Eastern Airlines, one of the country's biggest airlines, China Mobile, China Telecom and the Bank of Communications.
The event's sponsorship has a two-level structure: partner and senior sponsor levels. The marketing campaign and partnerships are expected to cover some of the 30 billion yuan (US$3.75 billion) cost of the event.
The marketing campaign was formally launched in March with China Eastern Airlines as the first partner.
World Expo 2010 Shanghai, from May 1 to October 31, 2010, is the first registered world exposition in a developing country. The organizers are seeking to attract 200 nations and organizations to participate as well as 70 million visitors from China and abroad. This would ensure the widest possible participation in World Expo history.
(Xinhua News Agency November 30, 2006)