The World Economic Forum (WEF) convened its 54th Annual Meeting in Davos - Klosters, Switzerland, from January 15-19, 2024, on the theme ‘Rebuilding Trust,’ emphasising the need for global cooperation and shared solutions in a world undergoing critical challenges like climate change, geopolitical issues, and more.
The Forum provided a crucial space to step back and focus on the fundamental principles driving trust, including transparency, consistency, and accountability at three fundamental levels: into the future, within societies, and among nations.
Representatives from over 100 governments, foremost international organisations, 1000 partner corporations, and luminaries from diverse avenues, encompassing media and more, came together at WEF 2024 to seek pathways towards a more resilient and equitable future.
The WEF platform buzzed with discussions on various interconnected themes:
- Achieving Security and Cooperation in a Fractured World: Discussions were held on promoting peacebuilding, fostering global cooperation, tackling social and economic inequalities, strengthening global health systems, and building resilient food systems to address the challenges of war and growing economic disparities.
- Artificial Intelligence as a Driving Force for the Economy and Society: Acknowledging the significance of AI for the future, the sessions discussed ways to integrate this revolutionary technology with other transformative technologies, like 5G, 6G, quantum computing, biotechnology, and others, to make it beneficial for all.
- Creating Growth and Jobs for a New Era: The rapid advancement of technologies like AI, IoT and automation raised concerns about job displacement and their ethical implications. Discussions at WEF explored ways to harness technology for good, create inclusive growth, and ensure a just transition for all.
- A Long-Term Strategy for Climate, Nature, and Energy: With the urgent need for climate action, sessions focused on accelerating the transition to net-zero emissions, fostering green innovation, and building resilient societies in the face of climate change, achieving the objectives of a carbon-neutral and nature-positive world by 2050 while providing affordable, secure, and inclusive access to energy, food, and water.
A Global Gathering of Minds at WEF
The 54th Annual Meeting of the WEF brought together various influential figures and leaders worldwide across the public and private sectors, civil society, and academia, from sectors including renewable energy, AI, automobiles, textiles and others, sharing diverse perspectives and insights for enhanced global cooperation and trust.
WEF: A Platform for Dialogue and Action
To translate discussions into action, India at WEF hosted a multitude of events and panels. The sessions fostered public engagement with panel discussions, roundtables, fireside chats, and interactive sessions.
These sessions took place at the India Engagement Centre, one of the three centres set up by India. The centres showcased India’s growth story and emerging technologies and served as hubs for G2B and B2B networking and engagements. Here is an insight into some of the major sessions:
Beyond Borders: India's Impact on the World Stage
The session, organised in partnership with the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI), offered a glimpse into India's evolving global role, contributions, and influence.
State of AI in India: Priorities & Opportunities
An in-depth discussion on significant issues related to risks associated with uncontrolled AI, highlighting its extensive potential for fostering social and economic impact on the global stage.
India’s Rising Influence in the Current World Order
The session spotlighted the global impact of the Indian Diaspora, India's leadership potential in evolving geopolitics, growth-friendly policies, and the opportunity to solidify its position as a world leader.
Cashless Catalyst: The Fintech and Digital Boom in India and Beyond
The session, organised in partnership with the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI), delved into India's dynamic fintech landscape, uncovering its transformative influence and impact on the nation's financial sector.
India as a Destination for Hi-Tech Manufacturing
The session held discussions on the advantages offered by India, including incentives and end-to-end value chains for manufacturing.
Trailblazing Women: In a New Era of Innovation
This empowering session, organised in partnership with the Women Inspiring Network, featured leading women entrepreneurs sharing their journeys towards a sustainable and innovative future.
The Global Indian: Catalysts of Global Change
Organised in partnership with the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI), the session underscored the crucial role of Indian leadership in driving global change, calling for ongoing collaboration and innovation worldwide.
Taking India's New Age Entrepreneurship to the World
The session, organised in partnership with the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI), explored new paths for shaping impactful, sustainable businesses using new technologies and practices, showcasing India's entrepreneurial potential on the global stage.
New Wave of Startups in India - The Deep Tech Saga
The session highlighted India's deep tech potential and discussed patient funding, ecosystem building, policy formulation, standards, and ways to boost India's deep tech competitiveness and sovereignty.
Democratising Electronics: Block by Block
The session highlighted the concept of democratising electronics, emphasising the shift from a consumption-driven to a manufacturer-driven economy, and explored India’s potential to adopt a hardware-driven economic approach.
Sustainable Jobs for a Sustainable Future: India's Vision
The session discussed vast opportunities in India for employment generation in agriculture and renewable energy sectors to ensure a more inclusive and sustainable future.
India's Roadmap to a Green Future: Technology & Finance
The session highlighted India’s commitment and initiatives towards the Climate Action Plan and discussed goals for a greener future.
Fireside Chat with Mr. Shaktikanta Das, Governor, Reserve Bank of India
The fireside chat session delved into navigating economic challenges, emerging tech, digital public infrastructure, and India's growth narrative.
India's Impact at WEF 2024
India's presence at WEF was vibrant and impactful, reflecting its commitment to global cooperation and progress. A strong contingent of government officials, business leaders, and thought leaders engaged in insightful discussions, showcasing India's growing global importance.
India's presence at WEF 2024 was inspired by the mantra ‘Engage, Experience, Invest’. Building on its successful G20 leadership, India championed the theme of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ – One Earth, One Family, One Future – acting as a unifying voice for the Global South.
Aligning with the WEF theme, ‘Rebuilding Trust’, India emphasised the importance of global cooperation and shared solutions to address pressing challenges like climate change and economic inequality.
While actively contributing to WEF discussions on key issues, India also took centre stage by hosting sessions on its pioneering climate action goals and inclusive development programs.
Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani, Hon'ble Minister for Women & Child Development and Minority Affairs; Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw, Hon’ble Minister for Railways, Communications, Electronics & Information Technology, and Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, Hon'ble Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs and Petroleum & Natural Gas, registered their presence at the WEF 2024, conveying India’s message of global cooperation and world good. Government officials, including Shri Rajesh Kumar Singh, Secretary, and Shri Balamurugan D., Joint Secretary, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce & Industry, participated in sessions and shared India’s evolving role in the global landscape.
Business leaders from media, tech, aerospace, and other sectors participated in discussions, showcasing India's growing entrepreneurial spirit. Some leading companies present included HCL Tech, Schneider Electric, Greenko, Builder.AI, Garuda Aerospace, Stride Ventures and others.
Guided by the mantra ‘Engage, Experience, Invest,’ India solidified its global leadership at the 54th Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum. Sessions held by Team India around significant topics like climate action, AI integration, and inclusive growth showcased India's commitment to shared solutions.
The five state lounges from Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and Uttar Pradesh at WEF garnered global attention at WEF, showcasing enormous investment opportunities in their respective states - adding to India’s presence as a global trusted partner. From ministers to young entrepreneurs, a diverse chorus championed India's evolving role in building trust and collaboration for a brighter future.