Economic Summit: Quebec’s discreet presence at virtual Davos

Economic Summit: Quebec’s discreet presence at virtual Davos

Usually very present at the annual summit in Davos, the Government of Quebec will be rather discreet during the virtual edition of the event, which opens today.

Prime Minister François Legault is officially listed in the “Davos Agenda 2021”, but he will ultimately not participate.

The virtual meetings offered this year by the organization of the World Economic Forum because of the pandemic are of no particular interest to Mr. Legault, we explain to the government. He has already had several discussions with foreign business leaders by videoconference since the start of the crisis, it is specified.

Fitzgibbon will participate

The Minister of Economy and Innovation, Pierre Fitzgibbon, will be responsible for representing Quebec at the most prestigious global gathering of millionaires, politicians and social activists.

So far, Mr. Fitzgibbon has seven or eight Zoom dates on his agenda. His press officer, Mathieu St-Amand, did not want to reveal with whom the minister was going to speak.

We can think that Pierre Fitzgibbon will follow up with the leaders of multinationals that François Legault met last year in the Swiss Alps.

Several absent bosses

Among the most notable were the CEOs of steel giant ArcelorMittal, vehicle maker Volvo and oil company Suncor. These three companies had dangled major investment projects in Quebec which have so far remained unanswered.

Unlike their predecessors, the new big bosses of Hydro-Québec and the Caisse de dépôt, Sophie Brochu and Charles Emond, will be conspicuous by their absence.

Three federal ministers

On the Ottawa side, ministers Chrystia Freeland (Finance), François-Philippe Champagne (Innovation) and Patty Hajdu (Health) will take part in discussions that will be webcast. Interestingly, the theme of M’s panelme Hajdu will be: “Restore cross-border mobility”.

Some of the world leaders who will participate in Davos Agenda 2021 include French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The World Economic Forum will hold its “real” 2021 summit, face-to-face, in May in Singapore, Southeast Asia.

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