Ahead of his visit to Davos in Switzerland on Monday for the World Economic Forum, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday that he looked forward to sharing his vision for India’s engagement with the international community. “The existing and emerging challenges to the contemporary international system and global governance architecture deserve serious attention of leaders, governments, policy-makers, corporates and civil societies around the world,” Modi said in a pre-departure statement here.
“In recent years, India’s engagement with the outside world has become truly and effectively multi-dimensional, covering political, economic, people-to-people, security and other spheres,” he said. “At Davos, I look forward to sharing my vision for India’s future engagement with the international community.” Modi will be the first Prime Minister from India to participate in a forum meeting in two decades after the then Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda in 1997. Explaining the significance of Modi’s visit during a media briefing here on Friday, Vijay Gokhale, Secretary (Economic Relations) in the Ministry of External Affairs, said that in 1997, the Indian economy was well below $1 trillion whereas it is now above $2 trillion. The main event in Davos will be the keynote speech of Modi at the plenary session on January 23.
In his statement, Modi said that apart from the events of the World Economic Forum, he looked forward to separating bilateral meetings with Swiss President Alain Berset and Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven. “I am confident that these bilateral meetings will be fruitful and give a boost to our relations with these countries and further strengthen economic engagement,” he said. According to Ramesh Abhishek, Secretary in the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, a dinner on Monday will be attended by CEOs of 60 companies. On January 23, Modi will interact with 120 members of the International Business Council, which is a part of the WEF. He will also interact with CEOs of Indian companies separately.