PM flies to Switzerland Sunday

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DHAKA : Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina leaves here for Davos on Sunday night on a five-day official visit to Switzerland to attend the 47th Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF).

The four-day meeting will be held on January 17-20 in Davos, a mountain resort in Graubünden, in the eastern Alps region of Switzerland, under the theme “Responsive and Responsible Leadership”.

An Eitihad Airways flight carrying the premier and her entourage members will leave Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport at 9:45pm.

The flight is scheduled to reach Zurich International Airport at 6:45am local time on Monday. Bangladesh Ambassador to Switzerland and Permanent Representative to the UN Offices Shameem Ahsan will receive the prime minister at the airport.

From the airport, the premier in a ceremonial motorcade would be escorted to Silvretta Parkhotel, where she will be staying during her visit to Switzerland.

On her way to Davos, Sheikh Hasina would make about one hour and 20 minute stopover at Abu Dhabi International Airport in the UAE.

PM’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim told BSS that during her stay in Davos, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will attend a number of events of the World Economic Forum and hold talks with WEF Executive Chairman Klaus Schwab.

On January 17, the prime minister will attend the opening plenary of the World Economic Forum at the Congress Centre in Davos. Before the opening of the plenary, WEF Executive Chairman Klaus Schwann will call on Sheikh Hasina.

The Bangladesh prime minister will also join a workshop titled “Shaping a New Water Economy” at the same venue on that day.

In the afternoon,Sheikh Hasina will attend an interactive session on “Harnessing Regional Cooperation in South Asia” at the Congress Centre.

On January 18, Sheikh Hasina will take part in an event titled “Worlds Underwater” as well as the plenary session on “Leading the Fight against Climate Change”.

On January 19, she will attend an interactive session titled “Informal Gathering of the World Economic Leaders: Responsive and Responsible Leadership in a Multipolar World”.

Besides, the premier will attend an event titled “Women Leaders Dinner: New Frontiers of Leadership” to be held at Schatzalp of Davos-Klosters in the evening the same day.

Concluding her five-day tour, the prime minister will leave Zurich International Airport for Dhaka at 2.35pm on January 20 and is expected to arrive at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport at 10:15 am on January 21 via Dubai.

The World Economic Forum (WEF) is a Swiss nonprofit foundation, based in Cologny, Geneva. Recognized by the Swiss authorities as an international body, its mission is cited as “committed to improving the state of the world by engaging business, political, academic, and other leaders of society to shape global, regional, and industry agendas”.

The forum is best known for its annual meeting at the end of January in Davos. It brings together some 3000 top business leaders, international political leaders, selected intellectuals, and journalists for up to four days to discuss the most pressing issues facing the world.

The 47th annual meeting of the WEF would focus on five critical leadership challenges in 2017: strengthening global collaboration, restoring a sense of shared identity, revitalising economic growth, reforming capitalism and preparing for the “Fourth Industrial Revolution”.

One-third of the 3,000 participants would come from outside Europe and North America, while one-third will represent stakeholder groups outside business and government, making it the most diverse Davos yet.

In addition to government delegations from over 70 countries, including all G20 nations, this year’s meeting will be attended by António Guterres, the new Secretary-General of the United Nations.

The meeting will be opened by President Xi Jinping of China, who will be accompanied by the largest delegation of Chinese officials since the country first participated in an annual meeting in 1979.

The co-chairs, who will steer discussions and give a news conference at the beginning and end of the meeting, are: Helle Thorning-Schmidt, Chief Executive Officer of Save the Children International and former Prime Minister of Denmark, Brian Moynihan, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Bank of America; Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, an Oscar-winning documentary maker, and Frans van Houten, President and Chief Executive Officer of Royal Philips.

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