January 25th, 2010
10:54 AM GMT
Davos, Switzerland (CNN) – This is the standard question the world’s elite ask each other in the first weeks of the New Year. Will I see you at the World Economic Forum? For some the answer may very well be “not sure”, “maybe”, or even “probably not.” The CEOs of Sony, Facebook and Burger King won’t be here. Steve Forbes is staying away. And President Barosso of the EU has decided to give it a miss too. But don’t think for a moment Davos is over and done with. The bankers will be out in force.
Facing swingeing reform from President Obama and with more governments deciding how to impose punitive levies, banks like Citigroup, Barclays and Morgan Stanley are sending top executives. They will no doubt be cautious not to be seen living the good life at a luxury Swiss mountain resort. The consultants will be meeting clients to cement relations and many CEOs will be eyeing up counterparts warily and pondering whether they should be doing a deal.
Davos will always have a unique role to play in the international calendar and this year is no different.
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