Davos 2019 Day 2: Shinzo Abe, Angela Merkel address forum

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Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel addressing the World Economic Forum attendees. (Screenshot/WEF)
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rince William, Duke of Cambridge and New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern join a panel discussing mental health. (Screenshot/WEF)
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Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, revealed further details of a Saudi investment deal at the Davos forum. (WEF)
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The second day of panels and addresses is taking place in Davos, Switzerland on Wednesday. (WEF)
Updated 25 January 2019
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Davos 2019 Day 2: Shinzo Abe, Angela Merkel address forum

  • The second day of panels and addresses is taking place in Davos, Switzerland
  • Highlights include addresses by Japanese PM and German chancellor

DAVOS: The second day of panels and addresses is taking place in Davos, Switzerland on Wednesday. Follow Arab News' live coverage below...

17:45 - If you want an alternative view of the comings and goings at Davos, you couldn't do much better than our reporter Frank Kane's 'Davos Diary' for a more tongue-in-cheek look at the World Economic Forum...

Davos Diary: From chalets to snow boots, how to master the WEF logistics

Davos Diary: An evening in the life of WEF, from Brexit to biodiversity

Davos Diary: Central Lounge — the networking hub of the universe

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17:10 - Missed the address by German Chancellor Angela Merkel earlier? Don't worry, you can read/watch everything she had to say by clicking here...

16:45 - Earlier on Wednesday, Giuseppe Conte dismissed fears Italy is headed for a recession, insisting that the country's economic growth could climb as much as 1.5 percent and said there was no need for a budget adjustment to meet targets. He was speaking to Bloomberg on the sidelines of Davos.

16:30 - Italian prime minister Giuseppe Conte is speaking now on stage. Follow live below:

15:30 - A fascinating conversation on mental health and the discussions now happening around the world and what is being done to help those suffering...

15:10 - Prince William says he found that one thing linked all the different charitable causes he had worked on - mental health. Speaks about how breaking down barriers and removing the stigma was key to what he wanted to achieve...

15:00 - Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern join a panel discussing mental health - one in four people will experience mental illness in their lives, costing the global economy an estimated $6 trillion by 2030. What can the global community do to promote mental health across all facets of society? Find out by watching the panel live below:

14:30 - Wang Qishan has proven to be a bit spiky with some of his answers to Klaus Schwab's questioning during this panel, and has made some very odd references. He even manages a sly dig at European economies and corruption throughout history via Charles Dickens' Tale of Two Cities - slightly awkward, if compelling, viewing...

14:15 - We now have a special address by Wang Qishan, the Vice-President of China. Watch his address and comments below:

13:55 - Merkel departs the stage, staying tight-lipped about her future after politics and when told she is welcome back at Davos anytime, she quips: "Well, you have me today - be grateful for what you have." Fiesty...

13:30 - Angela Merkel has defended global institutions set up in the aftermath of World War II, saying they have made the world a better place - and says the current global system will only be maintained if political compromises are made. She also says confidence in global financial systems has been shaken and must be restored.

"For a long time emerging countries like China and India influenced the world economy in a very strong way and when an existing system takes too long to react the consequences are that others (countries) make themselves noticeable through new institutions." 

13:15 - Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel takes to the stage, watch her special address below...

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13:05: Meanwhile, now time for some Saudi Arabia-focused Davos news - according to Kirill Dmitriev, boss of Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, a quarter of Saudi Arabia’s pledged $10 billion investment in Russia has been deployed, he said on Wednesday. The Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) in 2015 signed an agreement to invest up to $10 billion in Russia through a partnership with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF).

READ MORE: Davos 2019: Saudi investment in Russia ‘hits $2.5bn’

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12:50 - Ethiopia's PM Abiy Ahmed is discussing the rapid transformation the country has gone through in such a short space of time, something the panel host says leaders in Europe could learn from. Talking about the wider, regional influence Ethiopa could have, he quotes: "If you want to go first, go alone. If you want to go far, go together."

12:30 - Change of pace now, as we go over to a conversation with newly appointed Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who is talking about the country's rapid pace of reform and what will be needed to realize Ethiopia's potential. Watch live below:

12:15 - Jack Ma has just spoken about the potential of Africa - he says he can sense a fear of future in Europe, but not so in Africa (or China) where there is a great optimism for the future. He says Africa, and developing countries, need the 'Four Es' in order to suceed - "entrepreneurs, education, e-frastructure (internet access) and e-government." 

"Africans want change, the continent has many smart young people. Europeans always wants to keep yesterday. When you worry about the future, you will never be an entrepreneur."

12:00 - Alibaba founder Jack Ma is speaking to young people, technology experts and Global Shapers - the first question he is posed regards whether or not he ever had doubts whether his company would be a success. He says he definitely had fears and doubts, but he says he was completely "transparent" about that with his team and that helped build trust with the group that would make it a success. Watch it live here:

11:45 - As pretty as Davos looks in the previous update, it appears the reality is much like anywhere else in the world - traffic on the morning commute, as our reporter Frank Kane discovered...

11:30 - So much of the action in Davos happens indoors, and we rarely see outside the conference center - but what is the Swiss resort actually like? We've assembled a small collection of images for you, so you can see. Rather pretty, really...(All images: AFP)

11:15 - So what do we have coming up for you today? Shortly, Abiy Ahmed, Prime Minister of Ethiopia, will be making a special address. Then we will have German Chancellor Angela Merkel on stage. She will be talking about growing uncertainty in Europe over the impending Brexit after British lawmakers last week voted down Prime Minister Theresa May's deal with the European Union. Will Britain crash out of the bloc without a deal or will it end up extending its date of departurefrom the current March 29?

The trade conflict between the US and China will also be in focus when China's vice president, Wang Qishan, addresses the conference later. On Tuesday, Mike Pompeo said he was "optimistic" that there will be a "good outcome" in upcoming trade discussions with China in Washington. A high-level Chinese delegation is due to arrive in the US capital on Jan. 30 as the two sides seek to strike an accord to end their trade conflict.

READ MORE: Mideast CEOs turn gloomy on global economy, PwC study finds

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10:35 - Shinzo Abe has delivered an engaging and interesting address (not something you can say about everyone at the forum...) and this line about tackling Climate Change being a potentially profitable, rather than costly, exercise stood out...

10:20 - Shinzo Abe's address is all about his policies that have helped raise wages in Japan, put two million women into work and helping the notoriously elderly population transition into an evolving workforce. The fact he is addressing Davos in English is also particularly impressive - a sign of his hopes to open up Japan to the world a bit more?

10:15 - Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe begins his address to the forum...

10:00 - Haifaa Al-Mansour, the first female filmmaker in Saudi Arabia and a winner at this year's WEF Crystal Awards, was speaking this morning. The acclaimed director spoke about her dedication to breaking boundaries and shaping new stories, at a panel entitled “An Insight, An Idea with Haifaa Al-Mansour.”

You can watch a recap of her discussion here

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09:45 - Another bit of news from the first day was the meeting between Dubai's crown prince Sheikh Hamdan and WEF founder Klaus Schwab, you can read about their meeting here...

09:30 - More senior world leaders will take to the stage today, with the Japanese prime minister, the German chancellor and the prime minister of Ethiopia all on the agenda. Stay tuned to keep track of all Wednesday's action.

One of the highlights of the first day was the story and impassioned plea of refugee Mohammed Hassan Mohamud - a Somalian displaced person currently in a camp in Kenya.


Three of four engines on stricken Norway cruise ship restarted

Updated 24 March 2019
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Three of four engines on stricken Norway cruise ship restarted

  • The Viking Sky lost power and started drifting mid-afternoon Saturday about two kilometers off More og Romsdal in dangerous waters and high seas
  • The captain forced to send out a distress call and trigger a massive airlift operation

OSLO: A cruise ship that broke down in rough seas off the Norwegian coast with some 1,300 passengers and crew on board has restarted three of its four engines and will be towed to port, emergency services said Sunday.
“Three of the four engines are now working which means the boat can now make way on its own,” emergency services spokesman Per Fjeld said.
The Viking Sky lost power and started drifting mid-afternoon Saturday about two kilometers (1.2 miles) off More og Romsdal in dangerous waters and high seas, prompting the captain to send out a distress call and trigger a massive airlift operation.
The airlift was continuing in the early morning, Fjeld said.
Police said 338 of the 1,373 people on board the Viking Sky had so far been taken off by helicopter.
The vessel is making slow headway at two to three knots (4-5 kilometers) an hour off the dangerous, rocky coast and a tug will help it toward the port of Molde, about 500 kilometers northwest of Oslo, officials said.
Police said that 17 people had been taken to hospital.
The passengers are mostly British or American, they added.