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The 2018 World Economic Forum opened at the Davos Congress Centre, 23 January, with 3,000 delegates boosting the Swiss ski resort’s 11,000 population over five days. 

Delegates, who this year include president Trump, prime minister May and India’s leader Narendra Modi, will hear speeches, discussions and seminars.

Unofficial and informal events will take place in the resort’s hotels, principally the Steigenberger Belvedere, and other venues, with the participation of lobbyists, PRs and the media.

Norwegian premier Erna Solberg suggested in an early interview on day one that there needs to be a focus on corruption and illegal money flows. Ms Soberg is part of an all female line-up that is chairing Davos this year.

The World Economic Forum (WEF) has grown from a small meeting in the 1970s, when academic Klaus Schwab organised the bespoke gathering.

This year 900 of the delegates are chief executives or company chairs and more than 70 are world leaders. Others have paid $28,000 for a ticket, while WEF membership adds a further premium for those keen to join the exclusive club. One venture capital firm spends at least £500,000 keeping its investors happy at the event.

And it’s not all dull and worthy meetings; Cate Blanchett, musician and singer Sir Elton John are all scheduled to appear at the event.

This year, the forum’s official theme is: ‘Creating a shared future in a fractured world’ and sexual equality is featuring high on the agenda.

The main idea remains as it was in the 1970s – to spark ideas and conversations. The oft-cited meeting in Davos in 1988  between Turkish prime minister Turgut Ozal and Greek counterpart Andreas Papandreou has been credited with averting a war, while Davos was the place where the Brics New Development Bank – an alternative to the World Bank and the IMF – was conceived in 2011.