Swiss Economic Forum returning to Davos with sandals instead of ski boots

Swiss Economic Forum returning to Davos with sandals instead of ski boots

A woman passes by the World Economic Forum logo in Davos, Switzerland on January 20, 2019. DAVOS, Switzerland movers and shakers arriving at the World Economic Forum WEF this month can pack sandals instead of ski boots for a rare springtime version of the event in Davos, the Swiss ski resort that is Europe's highest city.

In December, organizers postponed the meeting of government, business and other leaders just before its traditional January slot, citing the difficulties of holding an in-person conference during the coronaviruses epidemic.

Locals who benefit from a $60 million windfall every time it takes place can benefit from simply putting on the event after a two-year hiatus, according to a 2017 study.

The people here are very glad that the World Economic Forum is coming back. Samuel Rosenast, the spokeswoman for the local tourism board, said it was a step back to normality.

Rosenast said that Davos' conference center closed for more than a year because of the Pandemic slammed hotels and restaurants in Davos, whose fresh air and sunlight drew sanatoriums featured in German novelist Thomas Mann's work The Magic Mountain.

Construction crews have been finishing pop-up networking facilities for the business and political elite that descend for the May 22 -- 26 conference. Soldiers are erecting security fences.

The Swiss government will deploy as many as 5,000 military personnel to support the local police. Air force jets will circle above to enforce a no-fly zone.

More than 2,000 leaders and experts from around the world are expected to be brought together, according to the Geneva-based WEF. Because of the Ukraine war, no government or corporate bigwigs from Russia were invited.

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Topics on the agenda include the pandemic recovery, climate change, the future for work, stakeholder capitalism, and the use of new technologies.

Svea Meyer, who runs the Kaffee Klatsch cafe in Davos and caters to clients at the meeting, was looking forward to business in May, typically in the quiet period between the end of the ski season and the start of the summer peak.

She said it was a real big chance for us and we're happy to see a lot of the customers from the WEF that we haven't seen for the last two years.

She said that it's better to have the WEF now in spring rather than not having it at all, because she saw the bright side of showing off the warmer face of a place better known for winter sports.