SHANGHAI: China has spent $48 billion – even more than it devoted to remake Beijing for the 2008 Olympics – to mount an elaborate World Expo and give its second city, Shanghai, the same coming-out party that the Games were for Beijing.It hopes Expo 2010, which features exhibits from 189 countries, including Australia, will showcase a polished, vibrant Shanghai that it envisions as a financial capital for the region, even the world.Everything about the expo, which opened last night on the banks of the Huangpu River, is large, most prominently the China Pavilion, a red, upside-down pyramid with floor space equivalent to more than 26 soccer fields. That makes it about 30 times the size of the US showcase, which is tucked away in a corner of the main expo site.Last night’s opening ceremony featured an elaborate fireworks display. ”Only we can hold such an expo,” said Fang Xinghai, director general of the Shanghai Financial Services Office. ”There’s a bit of national pride in it. We want the world to come and admire our success.”Preparations have been nothing short of monumental. After winning the bid in 2002 to host the event, Shanghai began clearing 2.6 square kilometres along the Huangpu River. That involved moving 18,000 families and 270 factories, including the Jiang Nan Shipyard, which employs 10,000 workers. Today the site is crowded with national pavilions, sculpture gardens, shops and a sports arena and performing arts centre shaped like a flying saucer.With 25 million tickets sold, city officials are projecting more than 70 million people could attend the 184-day event, which would shatter a record set in 1970 when 64 million people visited the expo in Osaka, Japan.Shanghai has trained more than 1.7 million volunteers and adopted Olympic-level security measures, adding metal detectors to subway entrances and screening cars entering the city.Last week police detained 6000 people they said were involved in street crimes such as theft and prostitution.In January the Chinese President, Hu Jintao, visited the Australian pavilion, the only international one in his expo tour.According to expo authorities, Australia’s pavilion has been a favourite with visitors during six days of final testing. More than 120,000 visitors joined long queues to see the pavilion and its mascot, a kookaburra called Peng Peng. And lamingtons were in hot demand with more than 1000 sold in one day, twice what was expected.GOING BIG  China expects about 400,000 daily visitors to consume 547 tonnes of food each day during expo.The site is twice the size of Monaco and 20 times bigger than the 2008 event held in Zaragoza, Spain.The expo theme is ”Better city, better life”.Chinese have been urged to queue better, spit less and not wear pyjamas in public.The 3500 police on patrol are forbidden to eat garlic or anything else that would make their breath smell.Agencies