Once again Robert Habeck is faced with a dilemma. The World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos is not popular with all Greens. “The World Economic Forum in Davos is considered a symbol of unbridled globalization, which fuels the exploitation of people and resources, prepares the ground for financial crises and has exacerbated social inequality,” he said in the run-up to the meeting, which starts on Monday.

“Despite all the justified criticism, Davos also offers space for controversial and critical debates on these issues,” he added – and thus described his mission at this year’s meeting of the business and political elite, which is taking place in person for the first time since the outbreak of the corona crisis .

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When he arrived in Davos, he then sounded a warning. A global recession is imminent, said Habeck at the start. There are currently at least four interconnected crises. Specifically, he mentioned high inflation in many countries, an energy crisis, food shortages and the climate crisis.

“We cannot solve the problems if we only focus on one of the problems,” warned Habeck. “But if none of the problems are solved, then I am really concerned that we are moving into a global recession.” This would have serious effects not only on climate protection but on global stability as a whole. If a part of the world suffers from hunger in the coming year, then it’s not just about what’s bad enough, but about global stability, said Habeck.

According to the ministry, Habeck will hold talks in Davos with his counterparts from Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Ukraine and Saudi Arabia, as well as with the Chinese special envoy for climate protection, Xie Zhenhua. Around 50 heads of state and government and 2500 delegates from business, civil society and science are expected in Davos.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyj also spoke in Davos on the first day. He called on the international community to impose “maximum” sanctions on Russia and demanded further arms deliveries. There should be “no more trade with Russia,” said the head of state in a video address at the World Economic Forum in Davos on Monday. An oil embargo and sanctions against all Russian banks are also necessary.

Guests in Davos also include Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), who will give a speech on Thursday, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and US Special Envoy for Climate Issues, John Kerry.

As usual, the non-governmental organization Oxfam drew attention to inequality in the world with a study at the start of the Davos Conference this year. According to this, 263 million people worldwide are at risk of poverty.

According to Oxfam, the economic consequences of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and rising energy and food prices are fueling poverty and social inequality. “Right now, low-income countries are suffocating under their debt burdens, and inequality and poverty are exploding around the world,” said Manuel Schmitt, social inequality officer at Oxfam Germany.

It is unacceptable that “corporations and the billionaires behind them are making record profits while millions of people have to skip meals”. Oxfam’s inequality report is also regularly the subject of criticism because the number of people living in poverty has actually always shrunk in recent decades and inequality has also decreased according to other studies. However, Corona has partially halted these trends.