DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The walk into the United Arab Emirates pavilion in Dubai is blooming with promise, and with symbolism. The resilient Ghaf trees, whose roots drop as deeply as they need to in search of scarce water, line a walkway that enters into a story of possibility. Resilience and opportunity is that UAE story, and the walk through the pavilion stretches past sand dunes, simple settlements and ultimately to an innovative, technology rich future that made this pavilion a must-see during the expo.

Here in Dubai, with the conclusion of the successful World Expo, this land has truly emerged as a “desert of dreams.” The Deseret News arrived here to participate in forums and the World Government Summit, held as an apt conclusion this week to the expo. It was just one of the many opportunities for the more than 23 million visitors who came to the expo during its six-month run, which ended March 31.

One cannot help but be impressed by the rise of the United Arab Emirates as a global business center. Those from America’s Intermountain West can see the similarities between the rise of the greater Salt Lake City area — a desert blossoming like a rose from the resilient work of pioneers — and the UAE, rising from the sands of the desert to its leadership positions in the capital of Abu Dhabi and in skyscraper-rich Dubai.

The Abraham Accords, established in 2020, normalized diplomatic relations between Israel and the UAE, Bahrain, Sudan and Morocco. These Arab states joined Jordan and Egypt in normalizing relations and are a strong statement about the appreciation for people of all faiths and in all countries held by the UAE. The accords are named after Abraham, the father of Islam, Judaism and Christianity.

Here then, in photographs, is a look at the expo — Connecting Minds, Creating the Future — and Dubai, as it will continue to welcome the world long after the expo moves to its next location in Osaka, Japan, in 2025.