In Davos, World Economic Forum hears call for safer roads

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Jean Todt, Alberto Moreno and Hugh Martin speak at Davos
Jean Todt, Alberto Moreno and Hugh Martin speak at Davos
Bertrand Badré, Managing Director of the World Bank, moderated the session
Bertrand Badré, Managing Director of the World Bank, moderated the session
Muhtar Kent, CEO of Coca Cola, at the HLP meeting with Jean Todt and Michelle Yeoh
Muhtar Kent, CEO of Coca Cola, at the HLP meeting with Jean Todt and Michelle Yeoh

A session on road safety has been held during the World Economic Forum in Davos. It is the first time the issue, now including in the Sustainable Development Goals, has been on the agenda at the annual summit of business and political leaders.

Moderated by Bertrand Badré, Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer of the World Bank Group, the Forum session, entitled ‘The Road Safety Challenge’, brought together Jean Todt, President of the FIA and UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety; Luis Alberto Moreno, President of the Inter-American Development Bank; and Hugh Martin, Chief Executive Officer of Sensity Systems.

Coinciding with the WEF session, a working meeting of members of the FIA High Level Panel on Road Safety was held in Davos. Members attending the meeting included Jean Todt; Luis Alberto Moreno; Bertrand Badré; Elhadj As Sy, Secretary General & CEO of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies; Muhtar Kent, CEO of The Coca-Cola Company; and Michelle Yeoh, Actress and Global Road Safety Ambassador.

The main objective of the FIA’s High Level Panel is to encourage increased financing and political commitment for road safety action, including looking to a greater contribution to the effort by the private sector. The FIA Foundation is providing some start-up funding to enable the HLP to get established and to encourage the development of new funding streams for global road safety, and the Foundation’s chairman, Lord Robertson of Port Ellen, is a member of the Panel.

“The road fatality pandemic is one that requires concerted effort and global action to be cured”, said Coca-Cola CEO Muhtar Kent. “By leveraging the networks at the disposal of the FIA High Level Panel for Road Safety it is my hope that we can help in pushing road safety to the front of the international agenda.”

Elhadj As Sy, CEO of the IFRC, said: “I believe the FIA High Level Panel for Road Safety can generate positive new strategies aimed at giving road safety greater international prominence. The community activism we are familiar with at the Red Cross will be further developed through the FIA High Level Panel’s innovative thinking.”

Michelle Yeoh, spokesperson of the Panel, summed up the challenge: “The mission to reduce road fatalities by 50 per cent over the next five years is not easy and will require innovation, collaboration and unwavering commitment.”