With Prince Albert’s recent trip to Antarctic fresh in his mind, the Monaco sovereign travelled to Davos for the World Economic Forum this week to speak about the adverse effects of climate change and how it is “more necessary than ever to listen to what science has to say”.
Held between 15th and 19th January in Davos, Switzerland, the organisers of the 2024 edition of the World Economic Forum assigned themselves the task of “rebuilding trust” in the global community.
More than 200 conferences, debates and discussions have been scheduled over the course of the four-day event, which has attracted more than 100 state and government leaders as well as over 1,000 organisations and businesses. Monaco’s Prince Albert II publicly attended several, making his presence and personal insight known with some strongly worded comments – and warnings.
“Unfortunately, the alerts launched by the scientific community have not been enough to reverse a trend which indeed seems to be moving in the direction of a predicted catastrophe,” said Prince Albert, according to quotes published by Monaco Matin. “There is a form of neglect towards warnings given to us by scientists. This negligence and indifference are still at work today for other threats: the situation of the ocean, for example. Some of the threats can still be avoided: it is therefore more necessary than ever to listen to what science has to say.”
Fresh from a recent trip to Antarctica with his family, Prince Albert linked his own recent experiences with warnings from the scientific community regarding concerns about the threats melting ice sheets and glaciers could have on the world at large.
“While it is likely that melting ice will release methane and CO2, it is also likely that it will lead to the resurgence of ancient bacteria and viruses, against which we are not protected,” he warned. “This link between health and environment is crucial. It is crucial for our future because unknown threats could arise soon.”
High-level and high-profile meetings
Among Prince Albert’s engagements at the event was a meeting with Dorin Recean, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Moldova, that saw the two discuss potential business opportunities and partnerships.
“The Republic of Moldova is interested in intensifying bilateral collaboration, especially in attracting Monegasque capital,” Recean told the press. “In addition to the IT, wine [and] digital content sectors, we can offer a series of other important opportunities, such as the implementation of infrastructure projects connecting us with Ukraine and bringing us closer to the European Union.”
Another important element of the mission to Switzerland was Prince Albert’s attendance at an artificial intelligence-focused sessions at the Greek House, which also saw the active participation of Monaco’s Interministerial Delegate for Attractiveness and Digital Transformation Frédéric Genta.
‘AI as a Driving Force for the Economy and Society’ is a key theme of Davos 2024 and Genta took to the stage to discuss the role of AI and its impact on various states around the world.
“The emphasis was placed more particularly on the Monegasque model, which defines itself as both responsible and secure,” says a spokesperson for the Monaco Government. “The immense potential for development of AI in the fields of economy, health and education was also mentioned.”
During his time at the Forum, Prince Albert also attended a high-level roundtable event led by The Ocean Race Chairman Richard Brisius. The goal of the meeting was, according to its organisers, “to team up the public and private sector to support and scale up innovation, promote investments, mobilise scientific expertise, generate ocean data – among other aspects – based on shared resources, networks, knowledge and technologies”.
Main photo via Palais Princier de Monaco