Top Indian leaders to present India story at WEF Davos meet
Over 100 Indian business leaders, including Mukesh Ambani, Sunil Mittal, Azim Premji, Rahul Bajaj and Adi Godrej, will be heading for the Swiss resort of Davos for the annual meeting of World Economic Forum, taking place from January 25 amidst a challenging economic scenario.
The top brass of India Inc would also be joined by Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma and Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia.
The young leaders like Jyotiraditya Scindia and Sachin Pilot would be part of the Indian team, expected to discuss the Indian growth story at this global platform.
The five-day event, an annual congregation of the rich and powerful of the world for over four decades, will be officially declared open by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, while close to 40 heads of state or government from the across the world are expected to be present.
WEF, a Geneva-based non-profit organisation, is expecting a record of over 2,600 participants this year, including more than 1,600 business leaders from across the world.
The meeting, whose theme is 'The Great Transformation: Shaping New Models' this year, is taking place amidst a worsening European debt crisis, which has a bearing for emerging economies like India as well.
Ahead of the event, WEF Founder Chairman Klaus Schwab said that "capitalism, in its current form, no longer fits the world around us. We have failed to learn the lessons from the financial crisis of 2009."
"A global transformation is urgently needed and it must start with reinstating a global sense of social responsibility," Schwab said.
Citigroup chief Vikram Pandit is one of the six co-chairs of the WEF Annual Meeting 2012, rubbing shoulders with the likes of Unilever CEO Paul Polman and Royal Dutch Shell CEO Peter Voser.
The global leaders participating at the event include UK Prime Minister David Cameron, US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, IMF Chief Christine Lagarde, World Bank President Robert Zoellick and WTO Director General Pascal Lamy.
A WEF group of 11 economic leaders, including Lagarde and Zoellick, has called for immediate steps to safeguard the global economy from challenges like decelerating growth, high unemployment and protectionist government policies.
The group has also called for the need to support the "economic transformation under way in the emerging world" to help revive the global growth momentum, but stopped short of naming any emerging economies.
India and China are among the major economies that have managed to retain a decent growth momentum despite global upheavals in the world.
Among others, the heads of state of countries like the UK, South Africa, Mexico, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Israel, Pakistan, South Africa and Switzerland are expected there.
Leading industry chamber CII, which has been an India partner of WEF for 27 years, said that the WEF Annual Meeting 2012 at Davos would see a strong representation from India.
Anand Sharma would also take part in a World Trade Organisation (WTO) meeting of the key trade ministers being held on the sidelines of the Davos meeting.
At WEF also, Sharma would address a session on 'After Doha: The Future of World Trade'.
The Indian business leaders at the summit also include Infosys Co-Chairman Kris Gopalakrishnan, K P Singh, HCL Technologies' Vineet Nayar, Mahindra Satyam's C P Gurnani, Tech Mahindra's Vineet Nayyar and Suzlon Energy's Tulsi Tanti, HCC's Ajit Gulabchand and IDFC CEO Rajiv Lall.
The global leaders expected at the meeting include Bill Gates, NRI billionaire and steel giant ArcelorMittal chief Lakshmi Mittal, Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao, Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg and WPP CEO Martin Sorrell.
The annual gathering of the top echelons of global business is being held in the backdrop of the rebalancing and deleveraging of the global economy in the wake of the pervasive financial and economic crisis, CII said.
The industry chamber said that the objective of the Summit meeting is to bring together leaders to define the emerging vision and action plan for the future.
The WEF said that the theme of this year's annual meeting reflected "the need for a profound overhaul in the face of a fraying global system and lingering economic malaise."
The four sub-themes of the meet are 'Growth and Employment Models', 'Leadership and Innovation Models', 'Sustainability and Resource Models' and 'Social and Technological Models'.