Davos returns under Ukraine cloud after covid break

Paris: The world’s political and business elite will hobnob in Davos next week after a two-year break caused by Covid, with the Ukraine war set to dominate the exclusive Swiss mountain summit.

The world has changed drastically since the last time the World Economic Forum took place in person at the ski resort in January 2020.

At the time, US President Donald Trump and climate campaigner Greta Thunberg headlined the show and the coronavirus had yet to spread widely outside China.

Since then, the outbreak in China turned into a pandemic that rocked the global economy, Trump lost the US election to Joe Biden, countries have endured climate change-driven weather disasters, inflation has surged and Russia invaded Ukraine.

After a virtual forum in 2021 and the postponement of this year’s in-person event due to the Omicron variant, the WEF returns to its Davos den on Monday under the theme “History at a Turning Point”.

But the hub of cheerleaders of capitalism and globalisation will lack its usual scenic snowy backdrop — and the usual Russian contingent.

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