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India to host “welcome reception” for world leaders

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has left for Davos, Switzerland on Monday morning to attend the 48th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF).  He is accompanied by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu among others.

He will deliver keynote address on the opening day of the WEF meeting on Tuesday. PM Modi will hold bilateral talks with the Alain Berset, the  President of Swiss Confederation, address the International Business representatives and hold a series of meetings with business leaders.

According to reports leaders from across the world will arrive in Davos Monday evening, when India is hosting a grand cultural show and ‘welcome reception’. It will showcase India’s diversity from culture and art to lifestyle and food. There will also be a live Yoga session.

Prime Minister said on Sunday, a day before he left for the global meet, said he would share his vision for future engagements between India and the international community. He further said that he would seek the “serious attention” of the world leaders for tackling existing and emerging challenges faced by contemporary global system.

The theme of the four-day WEF event at Davos is “Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World”. Modi, is second Indian PM attending WEF at Davos-Klosters after HD Deve Gowda in 1997.

PM is leading a large delegation, including six cabinet ministers: Finance Ministry Arun Jaitley, Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu, Railways Minister Piyush Goyal, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, MOS for Development of North-Eastern Region Jitendra Singh and MOS for External Affairs M J Akbar , Chief ministers of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis and Andhra Pradesh’s Chandrababu Naidu, high ranking government officials and more than 100 corporate CEOs.

Raveesh Kumar, spokesperson for Ministry of External Affairs has posted a message on his twitter account.

Vijay Kumar Gokhale, Secretary, Economic Relations has said, “We offer market, we offer talent and we would like the world to come and invest in this country. And I think that is the centrality of the message and it is about India.”

He said Modi’s visit to Davos is going to be a signal that India engages with rest of the world in a very multi-dimensional way. “This is occurring at a time when India’s attractiveness as an economy has grown where there is a quantum jump in India’s rankings in multiple indices and in the context of the recent reforms that the government announced,” he added.

Official sources said that PM will send the message that India is an open economy after having done significant economic, and ease-of-doing-business, reforms.

More than 3,000 world leaders from business, politics, art, academia and civil society will attend WEF annual meeting over the next five days, where Indian presence will be the largest ever with over 130 participants.

World Economic Forum (WEF) Chief  Klaus Schwab will declare the summit open on Monday evening with a welcome message on the meeting’s theme, ‘Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World’.

WEF opening ceremony will be followed by honouring Bollywood superstar Shahrukh Khan, Australian actress and theatre director Cate Blanchett and legendary British singer, pianist and composer Elton John with the annual ‘Crystal Awards’ for their contribution in improving the state of the world.

The participants in the World Economic Forum would include political leaders from G-20 and other countries and heads of international organisations engaged in high level dialogues facilitated by the Informal Gathering of World Economic Leaders (IGWEL) program. CEOs and chairs of WEF’s 1000 partners and member companies actively engaged in the International Business Council, Community of Chairman, Industry Governors, Regional Business Councils and System Initiative Stewardship Boards.

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