39th Annual Davos World Economic Forum (27th January to 1st Feb 09):
Global leaders urge collaboration and swift action
39th Annual World Economic Forum in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, focused on "Shaping the Post-Crisis World"." With the increased turbulence in the financial markets, this year’s meeting was seen as more important than previous years.
Five-day 2009 meeting attracted over 2500 participants from 91 countries, including over 1170 CEOs and chairpersons from the world's most powerful companies. Others included 219 public figures, 40 heads of state, 64 cabinet ministers, and various other high-level business, government, think tank, media, academic, religious, organizational, and union officials.
Business and governmental leaders face a destructive social backlash that could foment political instability, revive protectionism and reverse the trend towards globalization if they fail to develop effective solutions to the current economic crisis, participants at this year’s closing plenary session warned. Leaders of the G20 countries, who will meet in London in April, must quickly deliver on their commitment to develop a coordinated policy response to the most serious global recession since the 1930s.
Throughout the five days of the Annual Meeting participants worked on a number of objectives:
• Supporting governments and governance institutions, particularly the G20
• Ensuring that global challenges are examined in a holistic way, including climate change and water security
• Beginning a process to develop recommendations on how the structure and strategies of international cooperation can be updated
• Improving the ethical basis for business as a constructive social actor
• Restoring confidence in the future
"Retreating into protectionism would harm national self-interest.... The Global Compact has been working with major investors so that their work can incorporate key environmental and social issues." - Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General, United Nations
"It is important that leaders who come here go back and work on ways of finding far-reaching policies that will allow us to create sustainable economic growth, create jobs and coordinate macroeconomic policies." - Kofi Annan, Secretary-General, United Nations (1997-2006)
"In a deflationary environment, the weight of accumulating debt can sink the banking system and push the economy into depression. That is what needs to be prevented at all costs." - George Soros, Chairman, Soros Fund Management LLC, USA
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Founded in 1971, the Geneva, Switzerland based World Economic Forum (WEF) meets annually in Davos, Switzerland to bring together top business and political leaders as well as intellectuals, economists, journalists, and others. Annually, Davos becomes headquarters for the world's power elite to meet and review past achievements, challenges, and prospects of world markets, resources, and people everywhere.
The World Economic Forum is an independent international organization committed to improving the state of the world by engaging leaders in partnerships to shape global, regional and industry agendas. World Economic Forum is impartial and not-for-profit; it is tied to no political, partisan or national interests. The World Economic Forum is under the supervision of the Swiss Federal Government.
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