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January 29, 2007

The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting Ends With Concrete Proposals to Tackle Global Issues :


PHOTO: DAVOS, SWITZERLAND, 28 JANUARY 2007 - Participants captured during the farewell party at the Schatzalp, at the Annual Meeting 2007 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, January 28, 2007. (© World Economic Forum, Photo by Anette Boutellier)


PHOTO: Susan Schwab (l), US Trade Representative and Kamal Nath (r), Minister of Commerce and Industry of India captured during the session 'Frozen Trade Talks and the Need for Progress' at the Annual Meeting 2007 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, January 27, 2007. (© World Economic Forum, Photo by Annette Boutellier)

Davos, Switzerland, 28 January 2007- The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos wrapped up Sunday with climate change firmly at the centre stage of debate. In 17 sessions related to global warming, the Forum gathered the world’s top academics, business leaders, NGO representatives, UN agency chiefs, politicians and many others in order to advance the discussion and explore practical opportunities for progress through partnership. The meeting clearly illustrated the deepening commitment of business to engage other groups in addressing this issue. []

Following are examples of some of the concrete developments from this year’s Annual Meeting:

• The Forum announced the formation of a new international partnership of seven organizations to establish a generally accepted framework for climate risk-related reporting by corporations. Founding members of the institutional consortium, the Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB), include the California Climate Action Registry, Carbon Disclosure Project, Ceres, The Climate Group, International Emissions Trading Association, World Economic Forum Global Greenhouse Gas Register and World Resources Institute. CDSB member organizations have agreed to align their core requests for information from companies in order to ensure that they report climate change-related information in a standardized way that facilitates easier comparative analysis by investors, managers and the public.

• The Forum announced the establishment of a joint Israeli-Palestinian business council. Founding members formulated their mission as encouraging and facilitating constructive cooperation between Israeli and Palestinian business leaders to reinforce economic relationship and help peace building efforts by a credible and legitimate voice. The Council which will bring together some 200 Palestinian and Israeli CEOs and plans to hold its first assembly during the World Economic Forum Meeting on the Middle East at the Dead Sea in Jordan on 19-20 May 2007.

• An alliance of leading companies was announced with the objective to bring power to villages in Sub-Saharan Africa. Sub-Saharan Africa has the lowest electrification rate with three out of four people lacking access. During the Annual Meeting, the Lesotho Government signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Alliance Partners for a first project to deliver energy to a rural village in Lesotho

• The heads of the Big Four Accounting firms (Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers) have agreed to work with the World Economic Forum Partnering Against Corruption Initiative (PACI) to support the global fight against corruption. Together, PACI and the accounting firms will explore the development of a framework for companies to benefit from independent reviews of their anti-bribery programmes.

• The Presidents of the World Bank, the African Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the Executive Director of the international Finance Corporation reaffirmed their support of the World Economic Forum Partnering Against Corruption Initiative (PACI) and recognized the important role the private sector plays in guiding policy and assisting governments in reducing corruption. They have agreed to jointly pilot an country-specific anti-corruption implementation programme, and a sector-specific structural reform that will promote fair competition and transparency. In addition, the banks will explore using PACI's frameworks and tools as a starting point for developing their own programmes.

• The World Economic Forum and the Reinventing Bretton Woods Committee (RBWC) issued the final report of a two-year, public-private review of the international monetary system in cooperation with Group of 20 governments. Entitled "The International Monetary System, the IMF and the G20: A Great Transformation in the Making?", the report concludes that a critical mass of governments appears ready to try to adapt international financial institutions to a world characterized by increasingly large cross-border private capital flows, wider geographic distribution of economic activity and deepened regional macroeconomic and international trade policy coordination. It includes a selection of proposed reforms in such areas as strengthening the international adjustment process, improving crisis prevention and resolution instruments, and modernizing and rationalizing the governance of the system’s principal institutions.

• New data released at the Annual Meeting from the World Health Organization showed that the GAVI Alliance, a groundbreaking global initiative to increase access to children’s vaccines, originally launched in Davos in 2000, has brought immunisation rates to record highs in poor countries. The WHO data, project that since 2000, GAVI-funded immunisation programs in developing countries have prevented approximately 2.3 million future deaths, and that immunisations in 2006 alone prevented 600,000 future deaths.

"These projects may range in scope and ambition from the local to the global, but they are all examples of the growing interest of companies to work in partnership with governmental or civil society organizations to advance progress on critical challenges. Multistakeholder alliances such as these illustrate an important aspect of the "shifting power equation" that was the theme of our Annual Meeting this year – a new geometry of collective action and collaborative governance in a world characterized by growing dispersion of economic and political influence," said Rick Samans, Managing Director of the World Economic Forum. [] StumbleUpon reddit Facebook Google Plus Tweet This Seed This on Newsvine

Edited & Posted by the Editor | 1:31 AM | Link to this Post

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