More than 40 heads of state expected in Davos

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Founder and organiser Klaus Schwab said there were twice as many leaders coming as usual for the forum.

Geneva -- More than 40 heads of state are expected this year at the annual gathering of the world's political and corporate elite in the Swiss ski resort of Davos, the event's organiser said Friday.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are among the star political attractions for the snowy, high-altitude meeting on January 28-February 1.

Founder and organiser Klaus Schwab said there were twice as many leaders coming as usual for the forum.

Many regular corporate patrons, however, have been hit by the credit crunch, which has seen leading banks go under and deepening recessions in many developed countries.

Schwab compared the fate of some in the financial world to a car crash.

"We've seen some in Ferraris driving at 200 kilometres an hour while others were driving more reasonably," he said. "In the end, a huge car crash happened. Governments have been like the ambulances and the patients are currently in hospital.

Davos now has the role as a nursing home."

AFP/Expatica

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