Neither newly returned British Prime Minister Boris Johnson or any government ministers will attend the next World Economic Forum in Davos, a U.K. official said.
The move follows in the footsteps of U.S. President Donald Trump who placed a similar one-off ban on his administration in January this year, as Breitbart News reported.
“Out of consideration for the 800,000 great American workers not receiving pay and to ensure his team can assist as needed, President Trump has canceled his Delegation’s trip to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said at the time.
Now the Daily Mail’s Jason Groves reports a UK government source told him, “Our focus is on delivering for the people, not champagne with billionaires,” according to City AM.
The gathering is seen by participants as the premier networking event on the global calendar, and is held in the luxury Swiss resort every January.
While Johnson is keen to part ways with the junket, he has not always been opposed to what is a talking shop for the world’s financial and political elites.
As London Mayor he went at least twice, to urge attendees to invest in the U.K. capital.
“You just have to chuck a snowball into a cocktail party at Davos and you’d hit someone with a sovereign wealth fund who would fund a piece of infrastructure,” he told the Sunday Telegraph newspaper in 2013. He informed the BBC the same year Davos is “a great big constellation of egos involved in massive mutual orgies of adulation.”
The event is also a salute to conspicuous displays of corporate indulgence.
The WEF website reveals annual membership (required if you want to buy a ticket to Davos) is upwards of U.S.$60,000, depending on the institution or company’s “level of engagement”.
At the top are the 100 “strategic partner” companies – including Accenture, Barclays, Deloitte, KPMG and Unilever – who pay around U.S.$600,000 for annual membership, which entitles them to buy an access-all-sessions pass for themselves and five colleagues, including special privileges. But they still have to purchase actual tickets to the event.
Last January at least 1,500 private jets descended on Davos and nearby airports in Switzerland as the same elites gathered to talk about global climate challenges – before deciding the time had come to urge everyday travelers to re-think their plans to take commercial flights for work trips and family holidays.