Italy’s symbol for Expo 2015 – the Universal Exposition that will take place in two years in Milan, and that represents a great opportunity for the hosting country, both in terms of visibility and development, possibly economic – will be “an icon of Italian art and genius throughout the world”. The choice for symbol fell on the “David”, Michelangelo Buonarroti’s sculpture dating to the 1500’s, and conserved in the Galleria of the Academy in Florence, and ambassador of the Tuscan capital at the international level. It will be this work – or rather a copy of it – that will dominate the square in front of the Italia Pavillion at the Universal Exposition. Two reasons behind the organizers’ choice: firstly, the touristic appeal, since one of the Expo’s objective is to “generate the rebirth, at the international level, of the desire to visit the Bel Paese,” said Expo 2015 President, Diana Bracco; secondly, because it synthesizes the Italian qualities reknown around the world: the genius and the art.

The “David” place at the center of the Italian wager on the Expo also serves as a starting point for Tuscany’s commitment to make the international event an important driver for development: the goal is to bet, firstly, in the on the Regional territory’s touristic appeal on a global level – and here the goal for 2015 is to increase the number of yearly tourists by at least one million; but also to showcase the best projects and innovative ideas present on the regional territory. “Excellence and innovation” are the two passwords that Tuscany intends to promote at Milan’s Exposition, and to this effect, a wide effort was launched to include universities, research centers and the business networks in the task.
Then again, according to forecasts, the Expo will have a high-level showcase: 140 countries will be present, approximately 60 of which with pavilions in Milan; 3.5 billion in investments to attract, over the course of the year, 20 million visitors with daily peaks averaging between the 60,000 and 250,000. There is a very high potential for the economic impact as well: according to an analysis conducted by Milan’s chamber of Commerce and by Expo 2015 spa, the company managing the event, the total induced activity for the 2012-2020 period in terms of additional production can be estimated at 25 billion Euros: 3.5 will come from direct investments made by the organization and by participating countries, 15 billion will be the induced activity, and an additional 6 billion will impact Italy in terms of new businesses created, valorization of real-estate assets, direct foreign investments, tourism growth. From the employment perspective, still pertaining to the 2012-2020 period, the impact is calculated at 20,000 additional jobs per year.