The 48th annual World Economic Forum is underway in Davos, Switzerland. Many of the world’s most powerful players in economics are participating but foor many leaders the world can frankly wait while they tend to more pressing issues at home.
Trump, Macron, May, Modi and Mnangagwa have all decided that to be seen swanning around in the snow while there are crises at home is to rub salt into wounds in society that globalisation of the kind Davos represents is perceived to have opened.
The economic backdrop to this years gathering is also not one to inspire much confidence.
The world’s biggest economy is entering the fifth week of a government shutdown, the world’s second biggest economy, China, has registered its slowest growth in nearly 30 years, the world’s fourth biggest, Germany, is stagnating and the world’s 6th biggest, the UK, is suffering from the side effects of the Brexit stand off as companies cancel or defer investment.