Federal Palace

Switzerland set to take part in 2021 Olympic Games and Dubai World Expo

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of global events are being postponed – including the 2020 Summer Olympics and Paralympics in Tokyo and Expo 2020 in Dubai. The Federal Council has confirmed that Switzerland will be showcasing itself at both major events which will now be held in 2021. It also emphasized the importance of such events in terms of economic recovery for the international markets. 

The International Olympic Committee, the International Paralympic Committee and the responsible authorities in Japan have decided to hold the Olympic Games from 23 July to 8 August 2021 and the Paralympic Games from 24 August to 5 September 2021. 

For Expo Dubai 2020, the Executive Committee of the Bureau International des Expositions requested at its meeting on 21 April 2020 that member states postpone the event for a year. The proposal is expected to be adopted before the end of May 2020. 

In spite of these postponements, which also entail additional costs for Switzerland, the Federal Council views such large-scale events as an opportunity to position Switzerland and promote its economy, particularly in the post-COVID-19 phase. It has therefore confirmed Switzerland's presence at the Games and the Expo and has approved the additional related costs. 

In light of today's decision, the Federal Council has instructed Presence Switzerland at the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) to continue preparations for the House of Switzerland at the Olympic Games in Tokyo and the Swiss Pavilion at the Dubai Expo with a new budgetary framework.

The additional related costs amount to CHF 2 million (CHF 0.5 million for the House of Switzerland in Tokyo and CHF 1.5 million for the Swiss Pavilion in Dubai) and will be offset within the FDFA. The sponsors for both events have also reaffirmed their interest in participating in 2021.


For further information:                       

Ambassador Nicolas Bideau

Head of Presence Switzerland 


Tel.: +41 79 667 69 15



Previous decisions:           

House of Switzerland, 2020 Tokyo 

Swiss Pavilion, Expo 2020 Dubai


Photo copyright:  Parliamentary Service / Béatrice Devènes