Davos forum opens to discuss world's underlining issues

Updated: 2014-01-23 10:21


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DAVOS - The World Economic Forum (WEF) started its annual meeting Wednesday at the Swiss ski resort of Davos under the theme "Reshaping of World."

Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of WEF, said in a welcome message that he expected participants to bring brain, soul, compassion and nerves to this year's event to ensure a successful meeting.

The four-day meeting, as a platform for global elites to probe into a variety of underlining issues in the world, would bring together over 2,500 participants from almost 100 countries, including more than 1,500 business leaders and over 40 heads of state or government, according to the WEF.

At a pre-event press conference earlier this month, Schwab used three phases to summarize the characteristics of the global context - cautious optimism, diminished expectations and many known unknowns.

He said the confidence in the world's economic performance was slowly coming back, but many problems remained such as large fiscal deficits faced by many countries.

Schwab predicted relatively slow growth in the coming period, maybe 5 to 10 years, but even if the world would get out of the crisis, the growth rate would not be restored to the pre-crisis level.

He stressed the dominance of fundamental and underlining development issues such as employment for the human society, adding that this year's meeting would also focus on one single crisis and other hot issues.

"We forget that we should look for solutions for the really fundamental issues. We should look at our future in a much more constructive, (and) in a much more strategic way. That is what Davos is about," said Schwab.

At more than 250 sessions and workshops during the forum, participants would exchange opinions on fundamental issues such as natural growth, global financial outlook, new energy, ocean economies, health and climate change.

All the issues are under four major topics - embracing disruptive innovation, achieving inclusive growth, meeting society's new expectations and sustaining a world of 9 billion.