World Economic Forum 2023

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    • The World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Annual Meeting 2023, held in Davos, Switzerland, has concluded.

    About Annual Meeting

    • It was the 53rd edition of the Annual meeting of the WEF.
    • The meeting has brought together 2,700 leaders from 130 countries including 52 heads of state/government.
    • The theme of this year was ‘Cooperation in a Fragmented World’ which is in the backdrop of the Russia-Ukraine war, Climate Change, and changing global political scenarios.

    New Initiatives Launched

    • Giving to Amplify Earth Action (GAEA):  It is a global initiative launched by WEF with support of more than 45 partners to fund new and existing public, private and philanthropic partnerships (PPPPs) to help unlock the $3 trillion of financing needed each year to reach net zero, reverse nature loss and restore biodiversity by 2050.
    • Coalition of Trade Ministers on Climate: It brings together countries to boost international cooperation on climate, trade and sustainable development. It is currently co-led by the trade ministers of Ecuador, the European Union, Kenya and New Zealand and so far consists of ministers from 27 jurisdictions.
    • Global Collaboration Village: It was launched by WEF in collaboration with Accenture and Microsoft as the first global, purpose-driven  metaverse platform to create a new virtual space for strengthening international cooperation.
    • Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovations (CEPI): It set a new 100-day goal for pandemic response.
      • CEPI was launched in 2017 by the governments of Norway and India, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the World Economic Forum to accelerate the development of vaccines and other biologic countermeasures against pandemic.
      • It is based in Oslo, Norway.

    India at Davos 2023

    • As per the Center for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), India will become the third $10 trillion economy by 2035.
    • Global leaders hailed India’s digital and physical infrastructure prowess and its ability to attract global investments with its policies like Product-Linked Incentives (PLI). But they also highlighted the need for reforms in land and labour markets. 
    • The forum and the Maharashtra Institution for Transformation (MITRA) signed a partnership to work together on the urban transformation agenda. 
    • The forum also launched its first thematic centre on healthcare and life sciences in Telangana.
    • Telangana also signed an agreement with Allox Advance Materials Pvt Ltd for setting up a C-LFP (Lithium Iron Phosphate) active battery material production unit. 

    Other Key Takeaways from the Annual Meeting

    • Global Economic Outlook: Most business leaders were upbeat about the economy, with the US and the European Union (EU) seemingly beyond the risk of a recession now. However, Central banks of the major economies cautioned that concerns still remained, and would keep interest rates high to check inflation.
    • Reopening in China: China ending its Zero-Covid Policy and reopening it’s business has added to the positive outlook. However, this would mean a rise in its energy consumption, thereby driving up energy prices.
    • Friendshoring: The World Trade Organisation has warned the economies to be careful of friendshoring, as the big three trading powers of the United States, Europe and China pushed their new industrial policies. The term refers to the practice of relocating supply chains to countries where the risk of disruption from political chaos is low.
    • Ukraine-Russia War: Ukraine demanded more military aid to fight its war against Russia, and more financial aid to rebuild after the war.
    • Climate Change: Everyone agreed upon the need for green energy and the need for more money to fight climate change.

    Critical Analysis of WEF

    • The persistent criticism of WEF annual meetings is that it is an event where the uber-rich and powerful fly in on private jets to talk about poverty alleviation and climate action.
    • However, despite its flaws, the conference is an opportunity for key decision-makers to interact with each other. More conversation and communication is better than less contact and less communication.

    Source: IE