Davos prepares for annual parade of powerbrokers

Wed Jan 15, 2014 12:13pm EST
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By Tom Miles

GENEVA (Reuters) - The annual Davos gathering, which draws thousands of the world's most powerful people, will this year welcome more than 40 heads of state and government to focus on questions about the world's future, organizers said on Wednesday.

Among the participants at this year's event, which runs from Jan 22 to 25, are British Prime Minister David Cameron, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and presidents including South Korea's Park Geun-hye, Ukraine's Viktor Yanukovich, Mexico's Enrique Pena Nieto and Nigeria's Goodluck Jonathan.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will both be speaking and it would be logistically possible for an encounter between the two leaders whose countries are traditional foes.

Central bankers Mark Carney, Mario Draghi and Haruhiko Kuroda and U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew are also taking part, as well as IMF chief Christine Lagarde and World Bank boss Jim Yong Kim.

The 2,500 participants include the heads of all major international organizations and more than half the chief executives of the 1,000 largest companies, including Goldman Sachs (GS.N: Quote) chairman and CEO Lloyd Blankfein and Coca-Cola (KO.N: Quote) chairman and CEO Muhtar Kent.

More high-level guests are expected to be announced in the next few days. Others who could drop by include U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who will be attending the opening of Syrian peace talks in Montreux, at the other end of Switzerland, on January 22.


Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff will be the only head of state from the BRIC nations to attend. India is sending a delegation including Finance Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram, while Russia will be represented by its finance minister and two deputy prime ministers.   Continued...

World Economic Forum (WEF) Executive Chairman and founder Klaus Schwab addresses a news conference in Cologny, near Geneva, January 15, 2014. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse