Fat cats in the snow as 47th edition of WEF begins in Davos

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With the inclusion of those giants of capitalists, the World Economic Forum (WEF) commenced in Davos, in the eastern Alps region of Switzerland on January 17. The theme of this year’s forum is ‘Responsive and Responsible Leadership’. The Forum virtually aims to improve the “state of the world through engaging into business and fostering unanimity among political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and local industrial agenda.”

Around 2,500 top business leaders, economists, political leaders, and journalists gather for up to four days to talk about the most compelling issues facing the world.

This 47th edition of WEF is being attended by statesman, ministers and business tycoons. A large Indian delegation including Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari and Nirmala Sitharaman along with Tata group’s next chief N Chandrasekaran is here. Along with them NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant will also be attending the meet.

Charles Lindblom, a neo-pluralist pointed out that, as the major investor and largest employer in the society, business is bound to exercise considerable sway over any government, whatever its ideological leanings or manifesto commitments. It, however exaggerated the role of industries in shaping economic life as the poor remain unrepresented in the major dealings of trade and commerce. No doubt that globalization has increased exchange of goods, services, commodities and ideas. Also, there has been a ’MacDonaldization’ of cultures and goods.

Noam Chomsky, a radical anarchist referring to the trade policies advanced by WEF, noted that the propaganda of globalization for economic integration is incidental. In contrast, those who favor a different type of international integration based on human rights, become anti-globalist.

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  • India has been ranked 60th among 79 developing economies in the inclusive development index below China, Pakistan and Sri Lanka
  • The Indian delegation includes Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari and Nirmala Sitharaman along with Tata group’s next chief N Chandrasekaran
  • This is 47th edition of WEF
  • Around 2,500 top world leaders talk on the most compelling issues of the world
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Swiss President Doris Leuthard along with Chinese President Xi Jinping will open the formal sessions starting from January 18.

Though China’s presence is seen as a huge development as Xi Jinping being the first Chinese President to attend Davos meet. However, a large Indian delegation including Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu and his team has also reached the venue.

In his address to the heads of states and governments from across the world and other leaders, WEF Executive Chairman Klaus Schwab said, “We are at the very interesting point today”.