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Khamis, 29 April 2010

SHANGHAI EXPO NEARLY READY


Fireworks explode over the site of World Expo during a rehearsal for the opening ceremony in Shanghai, China on April 27, 201


Organizers of Shanghai's World Expo have been holding trial runs this week, before the official opening this Saturday, May 1st. About 70 percent of the nearly 200 participants participated in the trials, and visitors were already encountering long lines. Officials now estimate the 6-month event, themed "Better City, Better Life", will attract up to 100 million visitors, 95 percent of them Chinese. Shanghai has spent 400 billion yuan (58.6 billion US dollars) preparing for the Expo, according to state media - more than was spent on the Beijing Olympics. Collected here are photographs of last-minute preparations in Shanghai as they prepare to welcome the world this weekend.

Visitors gather in front of a huge animated baby mannequin displayed in the Spanish pavilion at the site of the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai on April 25, 2010. Expo organizers gave members of the public a preview of the largest-ever World's Fair as they tested facilities and public transportation before the official start on May 1.

A visitor stands at the South Korea Pavilion at the World Expo site on the trial day Friday, April 23, 2010 in Shanghai, China.

Visitors walk past the illuminated Expo Axis of Sunshine Valley on the first day of the trial run of the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai, China, on Tuesday, April 20, 2010.

Visitors stand outside the U.K. Pavilion, known as the "Seed Cathedral," at the site of the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai, China, on Wednesday, April 14, 2010.

A night view shows the Serbia pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo site April 23, 2010

A general view of the panorama of Shanghai and the Huangpu River from the top floor of Shanghai World Financial Center (492 meters high) in the Pudong Lujiazui Financial District on April 17, 2010 in Shanghai, China

Workers attach a logo in Chinese characters meaning the United States at the USA Pavilion at the World Expo site on the trial day Sunday, April 25, 2010 in Shanghai, China.

Journalists gather at the US pavilion for a press preview at the site of the World expo 2010 in Shanghai on April 7, 2010.

A worker stands at the wall of the South Korea pavilion at the World Expo site in Shanghai, China, Wednesday, April 28, 2010

In this April 11, 2010 photo, Shanghai Automotive Group Co., Ltd. (SAIC) debuts the Ye Zi or Leaf concept car at the World Expo in Shanghai.

Visitors outside the Danish pavilion take photos of Denmark's iconic Little Mermaid statue after it was unveiled at Shanghai World Expo site April 25, 2010.

Denmark's famed Little Mermaid statue is displayed after it was unveiled in Denmark Pavilion at the World Expo site on the trial day Sunday, April 25, 2010 in Shanghai, China. The 5-foot (1.5-meter) statue honoring Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen left Copenhagen Harbor for first time in 97 years for Shanghai's Expo which opens May 1.

Lead architect of the Danish pavilion, Bjarke Ingels rides a bicycle on its roof at the site of the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai on April 25, 2010.

Workers assemble a wall part of the Latvia Pavilion at the World Expo site on the trial day Sunday, April 25, 2010 in Shanghai, China.

A night view shows the Russia pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo site April 23, 2010.

An aerial view shows vehicles traveling on newly-lit intersections at night in Shanghai in this March 28, 2010 photo.

Riot policemen take part in a swearing-in ceremony at a security meeting for the upcoming Shanghai World Expo 2010 in Jiaxing, Zhejiang province April 10, 2010.

Paramilitary policemen take part in a drill in preparation for the security of the 2010 Shanghai World Expo, in Nanjing, Jiangsu province April 26, 2010.

Two performers practice at the World Expo site in Shanghai, China, Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Performers dressed as traditional Chinese Terra Cotta Warriors march during an event as part of the Shanghai Expo to promote tourism to Xi'an, Shaanxi province, in Shanghai, China, Saturday, April 10, 2010.

A man walks past the Polish pavilion at the site of the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai on April 27, 2010.

An aerial view shows the French Pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo site in Shanghai March 28, 2010.

A performer prepares for a rehearsal in Beijing on April 26, 2010 for their performance in the first week of the upcoming Shanghai 2010 World Expo. Along with daily parades, fireworks and other festivities, the Shanghai World Expo's 192 participating countries are contributing to a six-month calendar of music, dance and stage shows.

A Chinese worker stands on the top of the pavilion of Iceland at the site of the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai on April 7, 2010.

Farmer Wu Yulu, 48, operates his walking robot near his home in a village at the outskirts of Beijing April 14, 2010. Hobby inventor Wu, who started to build robots in 1986, has invented 47 robots that can perform different functions like jumping, painting, drinking, pulling carts, massaging and helping with cooking. He will display more than 30 of his robots during the Shanghai World Expo 2010, where he hopes to promote the practical uses of his robots

A child poses for her mother in front of the China Pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo site April 25, 2010

An aerial view shows Shanghai's new financial district skyline along the Huang Pu river at night in Shanghai in this March 28, 2010

Visitors walk past the Shanghai Corporate Pavilion, known as the Dream Cube, in Shanghai on April 26, 2010. Multi-nationals are seizing on the six-month event beginning May 1 to build their brand presence in the market of 1.3 billion people, but also the business and government connections - or "guanxi" - crucial to making money in China.

A visitor takes photos of a 3D-projected image of a Terracotta Warrior jade burial suit in the Aurora Pavilion as organizers of Shanghai's World Expo gave members of the public a preview of the massive event in Shanghai on April 26, 2010

A project model shows a possible future transport system in the Pavilion of Future as organizers of Shanghai's World Expo gave members of the public a preview of the massive event in Shanghai on April 26, 2010

Visitors walk past the "Information and Communications Pavilion," built by China Mobile Ltd. and China Telecom Corp., in Shanghai, China, on Monday, April 19, 2010.

The North Korean pavilion is seen, next to the Iranian pavilion (right) at the site of the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai on April 27, 2010.

Elevated highways are illuminated by LED lights on April 18, 2010 in Shanghai, China

A Chinese worker peers from behind a wall surrounding the UK pavilion at the site of the World expo 2010 in Shanghai on April 7, 2010

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