The Emirates 2022 World Stamp Exhibition, the first international philatelic exhibition, kicked off at the Dubai Exhibition Centre (DEC), coinciding with Expo 2020 Dubai. The five-day event (19-23 January, 2022) promises to be a rich bonanza for philatelists from all over the world, showcasing a wide variety of international postal stamps ranging from the historical to the current and the futuristic.
Featuring around 175 exhibits from 27 countries, the expo is co-hosted by the Emirates Post Group (EPG) and the Emirates Philatelic Association (EPA). Mohammed Al Murr, Chairman of Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Library Foundation inaugurated the event in the presence of Abdulla Mohammed Alashram, Group CEO of EPG, and Abdulla Mohammed Tayyeb Khoory, President of EPA.
The exhibition aims to showcase and promote philately, and develop cultural exchange and partnerships that can enrich philately in the region. Besides global participation from several nations, the event also features postal administrations from the GCC countries, philatelic and numismatic dealers, and stamp enthusiasts, with several collectors displaying their rare coins and antique collectibles.
One of the major highlights of this exhibition is a virtual reality (VR) show that lets visitors have an immersive experience of EPG’s four unique NFT (non-fungible token) digital postal stamps, each of which carries a distinct design based on the UAE national theme. These include the Golden Jubilee 2021 premium edition stamp that contains a gram of fine gold, Spirit of the Union – 1971 stamp, Year of the 50th – 2021 stamp, and Projects of the 50th – 2071 stamp, representing the UAE’s futuristic vision.
Besides featuring a dedicated corner for students who can learn more about stamps, they can also participate in ‘Postcards to Space’, a joint initiative of EPG and Club for the Future, a private foundation. Students from schools across the Emirates can write or draw their vision for the future on a postcard, which will be launched into space and back on aerospace company Blue Origin’s New Shepard launch vehicle, stamped “Flown to Space”, and mailed to their owners back on earth as a space-flown keepsake.
“This exhibition is a milestone in the history of philately in the UAE, which also coincides with the 50th year celebrations. It is highly rewarding to witness the exuberance of philatelic enthusiasts as well as exhibitors who want to showcase their rare stamp collections. We are also overwhelmed by the response received from visitors from across the world,” says Alashram.
Khoory adds, “The very idea of organizing this global event was to enhance the awareness about philatelic culture, as the study and collection of stamps is a reflection of a nation’s history, its culture, and the people it represents. The response that we have received towards this first of its kind international exhibition has been tremendous and visitors are eager to explore the rare exhibits.”
The Emirates 2022 World Stamp Exhibition is the first among a series of eight international stamp exhibitions to be held around the world in 2022.