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September 30, 2010

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Post-Expo plans set for China Pavilion

THE China Pavilion - the crown symbol of the World Expo but toured by about only 10 percent of Expo visitors - will get an extended run starting December 1 after a month off for maintenance after the Expo ends, the top official of the pavilion said yesterday.

"We promise to make those who had not visited the pavilion have the chance to see it, especially Shanghai people who had been asked to give more chances to visitors from other provinces and abroad," Xu Hubing, director of the pavilion, told a press conference.

Xu said how long the pavilion will stay open and the price of admission had yet to be decided.

The pavilion will feature the original exhibitions, chiefly Chinese ancient treasures.


The Expo bureau had asked the museums that lent treasures to the pavilion to leave the exhibits past the Expo's end on October 31, said Xu. He said some new national treasure exhibits might be added.

However, exhibits of the 31 provincial areas on the Chinese mainland will be dismantled after the Expo.

The China exhibition mainly includes a 10-minute panoramic movie, a 128-meter-long giant animated projection of the national-treasure painting "Along the River During the Qingming Festival," and a 10-minute cable-car journey passing many Chinese bridges, gardens and famous buildings.

The reopening plan was welcomed by people in Shanghai, but those from outside the city and abroad said they preferred to enter the pavilion immediately.

Li Fengying, of Shanghai, said she had visited the Expo three times but never rushed to get tickets to China Pavilion because she knew the pavilion would remain after the Expo.

Ang Jian Yung from Malaysia, an exchange student studying in Fudan University, said he would visit the China Pavilion in December before going back to Malaysia in January.

In January, Shanghai Mayor Han Zheng asked locals to avoid visiting the China Pavilion to give more chances to out-of-towners, saying the pavilion would remain after the event.

The national pavilion of China, known as the Crown of the East, had increased its daily capacity to the maximum of 52,000, up from 35,000 at the beginning of the Expo, said Qian Zhiguang, deputy director of the pavilion.

Every morning, 30,000 reservation tickets to the pavilion handed out at Expo entrances for individual visitors have been gobbled up within 10 minutes. The other visitors are on group tours.

The national pavilion has received 7.5 million visitors so far, including 80 heads of state and government officials from around the world.


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