Many members of Norway’s business and political elite, including a couple of royals, were joining other powerful people from all over the world this week for the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The head of Norway’s biggest bank thinks the forum is more important than ever before.
“We’re living in a completely different world,” Rune Bjerke, chief executive of DNB, told newspaper Aftenposten on Wednesday. “No one can manage to have a full overview of everthing that’s happening, and that why it’s important to travel and get new impulses and views, like here in Davos.”
Terrorism, lower oil prices, social unrest and the refugee crisis, diving stock markets and economic uncertainty are posing threats to business and political leaders. Among those from Norway who’ll be joining Bjerke in Davos are Prime Minister Erna Solberg, Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit, industrialist and climate activist Jens Ulltveit-Moe, Foreign Minister Børge Brende, Climate and Environment Minister Vida Helgesen and former Telenor CEO Jon Fredrik Baksaas. The latter stressed to state broadcaster NRK that he’s not representing Telenor this time, but rather attending in his role as chairman of the international mobil phone organization GSMA. Jens Stoltenberg, the former Norwegian prime minister who now heads NATO, was also due to show up in Davos.
Grocery store heir Ole Robert Reitan, who made headlines this week after reporting 120 rival stores to the police for illegally opening for business on Sundays, was also there to take part in the World Economic Forum. “It will be great to avoid discussing Sunday shopping,” he told NRK.