January 25th, 2012
06:35 PM GMT
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Ten years from now Qatar will make history as the first Middle Eastern country to host the football World Cup.

Qatar's ruling Al-Thani family has laid out a detailed strategy for its capital city, Doha, and a vision for spending the country's hydrocarbon wealth in a sustainable fashion. They see the World Cup as a key step in the region’s development.

This week on Future Cities, CNN’s Richard Quest sees how sport is the perfect economic tool to put an emerging nation on the global stage.

Filed under: BusinessFuture Cities


January 25th, 2012
04:56 PM GMT
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Davos, Switzerland (CNN) – The secret of a good igloo is its spiral structure, with snow blocks slotting into each other to protect against sub -zero temperatures.

But here at Davos, the Occupy WEF organizers - who’ve built seven igloos as they settle into protests against the World Economic Forum - have found rising temperatures a greater challenge.

Despite the biggest snow dump in decades, one day’s five degree high collapsed an igloo while a protestor was sleeping inside. Apparently it only sunk five centimeters at a time, and created entertainment rather than panic. FULL POST



January 25th, 2012
04:24 PM GMT
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London (CNN) – It’s official - Davos does not have the moves to attract Jagger.

The Rolling Stone frontman was supposed to be one of the more unusual guests at this year’s World Economic Forum, attending a tea party thrown by British Prime Minister David Cameron. But unfortunately for Cameron, you can’t always get what you want.

In a statement released Monday, Jagger said he was pulling out of the event, over fears he will be used as a "political football." Sir Mick  – a knight of the realm - said he was worried about people making inaccurate judgements over his political allegiances and, as a result, was declining his invitation.

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January 25th, 2012
03:22 PM GMT
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Davos, Switzerland (CNN) - The theme of this year’s World Economic Forum meeting in Davos is “the great transformation: shaping new models”. But this morning, at a WPP-organized breakfast about the world’s political outlook, it is the absence of a great transformation that is most clouding the world’s political outlook in 2012.

The breakfast, hosted with characteristic wit by WPP CEO Martin Sorrell, featured the political predictions of the American pollster Mark Penn and the British Labour Party impresario Peter Mandelson. But, in spite of the profound challenges to the global system, neither Penn nor Mandelson were able to conjure any great transformation in a world desperate for radical political reinvention.

The biggest party in America is “the no party,” Penn explained. The American electorate, he went on, is “fed up,” “angry” and “deeply pessimistic” about the future of the country. And yet, in spite of all this dissatisfaction, Penn sees the Republican primary race as a “circus,” is not optimistic about a third party candidate (unless Newt Gingrich unexpectedly wins the nomination,) sees little hope for a solution to the American budget crisis and expects Obama to be reelected in 2012.

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Filed under: BusinessDavosEuropean UnionObama


January 25th, 2012
02:15 PM GMT
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Davos, Switzerland (CNN) – With the world still shaking from the global economic earthquake, and suffering daily aftershocks from Europe, it is not surprising that the topic at Davos is whether capitalism is dead.

On the opening day, the main debate focused on the question: "Is 20th century capitalism failing 21st century society?"

It’s not hard to see why. Former White House economist Nouriel Roubini reminded us that today we are "back to the inequality of 1929 and the Great Depression." High unemployment and the failure of wages to keep pace with living costs are resulting in widespread unrest against elites. FULL POST



January 25th, 2012
11:53 AM GMT
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(CNN) - One of the world’s most prominent businessmen, Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, Chairman of Kingdom Holding Company, surprised many by announcing a $300 million investment in Twitter last month. But he says it was a logical business decision for his company.

“Kingdom Holding is not new at all to the internet and tech arena,” he told CNN’s John Defterios. “We were the first to invest in Apple computers … the first to invest in Amazon and eBay.”

While some eyebrows were raised when the Saudi company announced it would invest in Twitter, given that the site has been instrumental in the Arab Spring, Prince Alwaleed denies the deal was politically motivated.

“It was a pure financial investment with economic objectives,” he said. “Politics has no ingredients whatsoever in that investment … the secure economic financial investment with expected huge returns to our company Kingdom Holding.”

Asked about the future of Apple he said that judgement is still out as to whether it could continue its success post Steve Jobs, but he was hopeful that it would.

“I believe that Steve Jobs’ genius is by establishing a company that could outlive him and continue with his path,” he said.

Filed under: BusinessGlobal Exchange


January 25th, 2012
10:06 AM GMT
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(CNN) – In the hours before President Obama strode up to the podium to deliver his State of the Union Address, Bill Gates was quietly publishing his own thoughts for the year ahead.

Well, he was doing it as quietly as Bill Gates does anything.

Posting a link to his letter on Twitter, the businessman, philanthropist and regular entry on world rich lists wrote:  “We cannot tolerate a world in which 1 in 7 people is undernourished, undernourished (sic), stunted, and in danger of starving to death.”

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Filed under: Africa IncBusinessDavos


January 25th, 2012
03:01 AM GMT
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(CNN) - The woman charged with saving the eurozone will launch proceedings at Davos with the crisis weighing heavy on her mind, a day after a major ratings agency announced the Greek debt exchange deal would put the country in default.

German Chancellor Angela Merkeldubbed her country’s “Iron Lady” – will provide the official opening address early in the evening on the first day of the World Economic Forum 2012, in the Swiss resort town of Davos.

Together with French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Merkel has been at the heart of efforts to rescue the eurozone from the debt crisis engulfing its member states. The crisis will be at the forefront of discussions on the opening day, with a session after lunch on the “new context in Europe,” addressing levels of confidence in the Greek and Italian solutions, emerging faultlines on the continent and the eurozone’s future within the European Union. FULL POST

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Filed under: BusinessDavos


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