This afternoon, Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Peter Altmaier will be participating in a panel discussion in the context of the virtual World Economic Forum. Due to the pandemic, this year’s World Economic Forum is taking place as a one-week online conference.

Apart from Minister Altmaier, the panellists include Christine Lagarde, President of the European Central Bank, and French Minister of the Economy and Finance Bruno le Maire. The discussion will be focussing on the question of how to return to growth and how business and governments can press ahead with a new economic agenda that shows ways out of the crisis while guaranteeing productivity and, at the same time, sustainability and prosperity for all.

Federal Minister Altmaier said: "In spite of the current difficult situation, this year’s virtual World Economic Forum brings together representatives from all over the world to share and develop ideas on a better global economy. As regards growth, I believe that it is important for us to look forward rather than backwards. We need ways out of the crisis, and we are also facing current challenges, including digitalisation, climate change and demographic change, which we need to take into account from the start. Everything we are now creating must be more sustainable, more digital and smarter than it would have been without the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This is how we will emerge stronger from the crisis.“

For more than 50 years now, the World Economic Forum has served as a platform for senior representatives from business, government, international organisations, civil society and science to meet at the beginning of each year in order to discuss the most urgent global issues. In view of the current exceptional situation, the participants cannot attend the traditional Annual Meeting in person, while the dialugue is more important than ever. The Davos Agenda, a virtual conference on topics which are essential for the world economy, is a new format of the World Economic Forum for this exchange. During a whole week, a global programme will help senior representatives to find innovative and bold solutions in order to contain the COVID-19 pandemic and promote a robust recovery. It is the first part of the 2021 WEF. Leaders are invited to attend the Special Annual Meeting 2021 in Singapore at the end of May.