From January 23 – 26 of 2018 in the middle of heavy snow the Annual general meeting of the World Economic Forum was held in Davos, Switzerland. This year’s theme being “Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World,” and more than 1000 sessions were held in each field. In the rise of protectionism in Britain and the United States where the leaders of the G7 excluding Japan stepped up and withdrew from the EU, European leaders called one after another to deepen international cooperation and momentum for globalization.
Until 2010, economic and financial risks were dealt with accordingly, but in recent years there has been growing concern about environmental and cultural risks supported by the booming economy. This year 90% of global leaders also show that political / trade collision occurs, and 80% say that the possibility of war has increased.
Meanwhile, executives of financial institutions suggested that stock markets in the highest price zone in history are not in a sustainable state also supported by bullish judgment by investors. It is said that we are experiencing signs close to that of a bubble before a financial crisis occurs. The Central Bank has increased their focus and their concern that problems will occur in the stock market if shifts occur before they are expected.
In addition, new technologies such as virtual currency, AI, and robotics were discussed vigorously. Google’s Sundar Pichai said that AI might be more important than electricity and firepower. He also emphasized the need to minimize risk.
The speech of President Trump, taking a protectionist policy before the opening was of note. As a result, President Trump emphasized the United States first principle but commented the potential damage that exclusionism would bring as well as a possible return to the TPP.
While the Davos Conference promotes globalism and free trade, people who can adapt to the changes in these fields such as finance, IT, and technology, will become increasingly successful and the gap will spread. The theme of “Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World,” shows the division of the world that encompasses the cultural aspect that global residents become more cosmopolitan and the people of the local world become isolated. Although it was this Davos meeting that sounded the warning bell, this discussion was held at a place where elites of each country gathered. There are now questions and doubts to what extent of a crisis this may actually be.