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Meeting with World Economic Forum Executive Chairman Klaus Martin Schwab

November 27, 2019, St Petersburg

During his visit to St Petersburg, Vladimir Putin met with Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum Klaus Martin Schwab.

The meeting was attended by Minister of Economic Development Maxim Oreshkin.

* * *

President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Schwab, please accept my sincere greetings. I am happy to see you again.

We all know the current state of the world economy. There are many problems and the number of unpredictable variables is continually on the rise.

Global GDP rates are dropping. According to the WTO, trade will probably grow by about 1.2 percent instead of the predicted 4 percent.

This is why your international venue, the Global Economic Forum, is in such demand and is of great use. It supports people striving to work openly and in line with current international law and promotes contacts between business and government officials.

This is why we have always supported and will continue to support our relations with the forum you founded. Naturally, Russian representatives have always attended and will attend your events.

In turn, we conduct similar events that are primarily aimed at establishing business contacts with Russia’s partners. You know we have the Economic Forum here in St Petersburg as well as different events in the Far East, Siberia and southern Russia. So we are following your example. I hope that we are not letting you down and that we are working in unison.

Executive Chairmanof the World Economic Forum (retranslated): Mr President, thank you for the warm reception. We are indeed linked by many years of good cooperation. It always mattered to me that Russian representatives took part in our events in Davos. It has always had a special meaning for me.

Much has changed since you last attended our forum. We are progressing, and now we have the status of an international organisation in Switzerland. Our goal, as you have already said, is to help enhance cooperation between businesspeople and state structures.

We are confident that the significant challenges we face, be it the climate and environment issues or economic growth problems, can only be resolved through cooperation, and at the global level.

I would also like to express my positive emotions after I spent two days in Moscow. Some people call me the father of the fourth industrial revolution. I wrote a book about it and would like to give it to you.

I also heard, including from Minister Oreshkin, that Russia has managed to make significant advancements, especially in striving to develop artificial intelligence. We are asking ourselves how to cope with these challenges including via global cooperation. We think that specific problems will arise in building global cooperation in the area of new technologies. We will need new global standards, new ethical norms, including in AI technology development. This is the reason why we set up a network of centres where we analyse technologies of the fourth industrial revolution.


November 27, 2019, St Petersburg