World Expo 2012 Yeosu Promotes International Understanding, Business Opportunities [Video]

World Expo 2012 Yeosu might be taking place in the shadow of another international event 5,000 miles away, but the Expo is still drawing large crowds with the idea of cultural exchange and a peaceful rivalry.

The expo, taking place in the city of Yeosu in South Korea, is the latest installment of an event that officially is meant to create greater international understanding but unofficially serves as a chance to boost trade, provide networking opportunities and get in a bit of national promotion, CNN reports.

The World Expo 2012 Yeosu will draw close to four million visitors, who will fill the converted industrial site. The most popular attractions are pavilions hosting interactive displays, CNN has reported, especially ones on ocean conservation and marine exploration, which is the theme of World Expo 2012 Yeoso.

Though the World Expo is officially for its guests, the biggest impact could be from the outsized business networking opportunities it provides, CNN reports. Business leaders there can reach up to 104 different countries in a single day, giving them huge opportunities to make new contacts and cut deals.

“It’s government relations really,” Stine L. Guldmann, director of the Denmark pavilion, told CNN. “South Korea is quite important to Denmark. It’s an opportunity to brand your country both in a tourism way but also attract skillful people or showcase our abilities.”

While the World Expo 2012 Yeosu is drawing crowds and creating business opportunities, it is also accomplishing its original task–bringing more awareness to the delicate situation facing the world’s oceans.

“The Expo raised awareness of the deteriorating marine environment, destruction of the marine ecosystem, and rising sea levels along with the cultural experiences,” Bhusawang Chartichai from the Ministry of Culture in Thailand told Korean IT Times.

World Expo 2012 Yeosu runs through Aug. 12.