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India to have strong presence at WEF's Davos meet

The meeting, which would start on January 20 and continue till January 24, will see over 2,500 corporate and political leaders, as also 40 heads of states and governments from across the world.

New Delhi: The annual congregation of the global elite for the World Economic Forum this week will have a strong India presence with senior union ministers Arun Jaitley and Piyush Goyal, along with over 100 top corporate leaders, set to leave for the Swiss ski resort town of Davos.

Other prominent names from India would include Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian, as also Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh Chief Ministers -- Devendra Fadnavis and Chandra Babu Naidu, respectively.

Among other engagements, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is expected to talk at WEF on how new leadership is transforming the business, political and social landscape of India.

Besides, he would discuss with global leaders the near-term and long-term priorities of the BRICS block of emerging countries in the context of their trade and investment partnership.

In another session, Jaitley would participate in a discussion on how India as the world's most populous democracy will revive and accelerate economic modernisation, growth and job creation.

Power and Coal Minister Piyush Goyal will discuss on how new business models are scaling energy decentralisation and emissions reduction, besides his other engagements.

Meeting against the backdrop of the world economy facing multiple challenges, the 45th edition of the WEF annual meet would discuss 'The New Global Context' as this year's theme, while issues like terrorism are likely to hog the limelight in the wake of recent terror attacks including in France.

Ahead of the meeting, WEF said that the risk of international conflict poses the "biggest threat" to global stability while likelihood of terrorist attacks has intensified the most since last year.

German Chancellor Angel Merkel, French President Francois Hollande, Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang, Pakistan Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and Switzerland President Simonetta Sommaruga would be present among top global leaders.

Among Indian business leaders, those expected at the annual meeting of the rich and powerful from across the world include Tata group chief Cyrus Mistry, RIL's Mukesh Ambani, ICICI Bank's Chanda Kochhar, Jet Airways' Naresh Goyal, TCS' N Chandrasekaran and SBI's Arundhati Bhattacharya.

They also include Bharat Forge's Baba Kalyani, Essar Group's Shashi and Ravi Ruia, and Infosys' Vishal Sikka, as also eminent names like Azim Premji, Sunil Mittal, Uday Kotak, Rahul Bajaj and Adi Godrej.

Jubilant Bhartia Group Co-Chairman and Founder Hari S Bhartia is among the six co-chairs for this year's WEF meet.

Other co-chairs are World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, Oxfam International Executive Director Winnie Byanyima, UK-based Alliance Trust's CEO Katherine Garrett-Cox, Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt and Brazil's Itau Unibanco vice chairman and CEO Roberto Egydio Setubal.

The meeting, which would start on January 20 and continue till January 24, will see over 2,500 corporate and political leaders, as also 40 heads of states and governments from across the world.

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, South African President Jacob Zuma, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi and US Secretary of State John Kerry, would be also present.

Current affairs, such as the escalating geopolitical conflicts, pandemics, diverging growth and the new energy context are on the agenda.

There would be wide ranging discussions on ten global challenges, including on environment and resource scarcity, employment skills and human capital, gender parity, long-term investing, infrastructure and development, food security and agriculture.

The meet would also deliberate upon international trade and investment, future of the internet, global crime and anti- corruption, social inclusion and future of financial systems.

There would be more than 280 sessions spread across diverse topics including crisis and co-operation, growth and stability, innovation and industry, society and security.

International Monetary Fund's Managing Director Christine Lagarde, World Trade Organisation (WTO) Director General Roberto Azevedo, International Labour Organisation Director General Guy Ryder as well as governors of the central banks of Brazil, Canada, England, France, Italy, Japan, Mexico and Switzerland, would be in attendance.

Besides, Alibaba Group Executive Chairman Jack Ma Yun, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Yahoo President and CEO Marissa Mayer and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, are among the registered participants.