PM arrives in Switzerland to participate in World Economic Forum


Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif arrived here Monday to participate in the 47th World Economic Forum’s annual meeting aimed at fostering greater social inclusion and human development.

Accompanied by Begum Kulsoom Nawaz and Special Assistant to Prime Minister Tariq Fatemi, the prime minister was received at the Zurich Airport, also known as Kloten Airport, by Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the UN Mission in Geneva Tehmina Janjua and senior Swiss officials.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is here on the special invitation of WEF’s Executive Chairman, Professor Klaus Schwab, to pursue his dynamic economic agenda aimed at turning around the national economy.

The prime minister will be presenting Pakistan’s case of economic success and the ideal business and investment opportunities, besides attracting foreign direct investment.

He will be extensively utilising the visit to further Pakistan’s economic and business interests by inviting leading firms to invest in Pakistan.

The theme for this year’s meeting is ‘Responsive and Responsible Leadership’, which would focus on four critical leadership challenges for 2017: revitalising the global economy, reforming capitalism, and preparing for the fourth industrial revolution.

Around 3,000 leaders from government, business and civil society will gather at the 47th World Economic Forum annual meeting from January 17-20 in Davos, Switzerland.

The participants include one-third from outside Europe and North America, while one-third representing society outside of business and government.

The prime minister has a full agenda at Davos, including a number of bilateral meetings with heads of states and governments, as well as with business leaders.

He will also have a meeting with WEF chairman Prof Klaus Schwab. Bilateral meetings are expected with the PM’s of Sweden, Norway and Sri Lanka, besides a meeting with Queen Maxima of Netherlands.

He will meet the new United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, as well as the Swiss President Doris Leuthard.

The Foreign Office in a statement said the PM will address a large group of about 60 top business leaders on ‘Investing in Pakistan: the New Reality’.

He will have a roundtable meeting, in which he would share with a select group of business leaders, the significant economic changes taking place in Pakistan, and the immense investment and trade opportunities opening up in the country.

The annual meeting 2017 will be opened by President Xi Jinping of China, who will be accompanied by the largest delegation of Chinese officials since the country first participated in the annual meeting in 1979.

In keeping with the theme, over half of the programme’s 400 sessions will address strategies for fostering greater social inclusion and human development. The CEOs of over 1,000 companies will participate in the forum.

The forum that began in 1971 has consistently argued for an inclusive and sustainable approach to managing the world’s transformation, even as it has become increasingly interconnected and more complex.

The co-chairs taking a principal role in shaping the discussion at the annual meeting 2017 are as follows: Bank of America’s Board Chairman and CEO Brian Moynihan, documentary filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy, Save the Children International (United Kingdom) CEO Helle Thorning-Schmidt, Royal Philips (Netherlands) President and CEO Frans van Houten, and Hewlett-Packard Enterprise (USA) President and CEO Meg Whitman.

Information Technology and Telecommunication Minister, Anusha Rahman Khan, will also speak at the forum. National Health Services Minister, Saira Afzal Tarar, will speak on ‘Raising Life Expectancy and Expectations.’

In addition to being the most comprehensive meeting of ministerial delegations in the world, with over 70 countries—including all G20 countries participating—this year’s meeting will include the participation of the new secretary-general of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, along with heads of key international organisations.