Climate change, trade wars, looming recession and geopolitical tension are straining societies and risk prospects of future generations.
The world economy is facing real headwinds with the lowest growth in a decade due to geopolitical polarization and the global leaders have to come together to ensure world economy doesn’t recede into serious recession, Børge Brende, president of World Economic Forum, said in Dubai on Sunday.
“The uncertainty about the future of global trading system is now negatively impacting global growth. What would happen if we are faced with another serious recession? Would global leaders this time again come together same like Lehman Brother’s fall in 2008 and agree on orthodox initiatives to make sure that that global economy doesn’t end up in serious recession. This is something we have to think about,” Brende said while giving opening speech at the two-day annual meeting of the Global Future Council which began in Dubai on Sunday.
He said climate change, trade wars, looming recession and geopolitical tension are straining societies and risk prospects of future generations. “But cohesive, peaceful and sustainable world is possible. New technologies can play crucial role in solving many of the most pressing global challenges. Data is new oxygen but it isn’t about just big data but smart data,” he said.
The fourth Annual Meeting of the Global Future Councils brings together nearly 700 leading experts from around the world to generate ideas and answers for solving the most critical challenges facing humanity today.
“In many ways,” Brende said, “we have moved from cold war to hot peace. The world’s problems are more and more integrated but response is unfortunately increasingly fragmented. We just have to realise we are living in a truly globalized world where your problems are my problems and vice versa and we have to act accordingly.”
He noted that America’s unipolar moment has passed as quickly as it appeared at the end of cold war. “Asia now accounts for half of global GDP but still the US is the world’s largest economy with 22 per cent of global GDP and 5 per cent of global population.”
While giving a keynote speech at the opening of the Global Future Council 2019, Mohammad Abdullah Al Gergawi, UAE’s Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future, said the UAE is an effective part of the world. “It is a country that fulfill its duties to rest of the society, thanks to the constant guidance from leaders, we always try to stay positive to challenges facing the world. We have set up a center for Fourth Industrial Revolution for global ethical framework and also help other governments in their digital trajectory,” he said.
He said the world needs answers for hundreds of questions about the future of geopolitics, world trade and investment, transport and energy sectors, urban planning and future prospects of IoT and AI.
He questioned the role of Fourth Industrial Revolution whether it has reduced gap between the poor and the rich.
“We know that more than 600 million people are still living on traditional means of agriculture with no machine intervention. And more than 1 billion people still live without electricity which was an outcome of Second Industrial Revolution. One per cent of world population own more than half of global wealth and half of the world’s less fortunate own just 1 per cent of global wealth. We know that today around 2 billion people connected to internet and are benefitting from data revolution. But what about 4 billion people who don’t have this advantage. What will happen when half of the world start adopting IoT, AI, Blockchain and other technologies while other half remain light years away from new technologies, Gergawi said in his address.
The UAE minister stressed that advanced technology is a neutral science but its wrong use leads to bigger challenge.
He also highlighted the role and importance of trust on government, companies and the media.
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