Fiscal crises biggest risk to global business, WEF says

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: 2019 World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: 2019 World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos

LONDON (Reuters) – The possibility of a fiscal crisis is the biggest risk to doing business globally, according to a survey of World Economic Forum business leaders published on Tuesday, though there were strong regional differences in views of the biggest risk.

In North America and Europe, cyber attacks were considered the biggest risk. Environmental risks were the top concern in South Asia, which highlighted water crises, and in East Asia and the Pacific, which identified natural catastrophes.

Overall, the executives put fiscal crises as the top risk over the next 10 years, followed by cyber attacks and unemployment or underemployment, the WEF’s Executive Opinion Survey showed.

The survey of 12,897 business leaders from 133 countries makes up part of the WEF’s global competitiveness report, published before the January Davos forum.

“At a time when global economic growth appears fragile, business leaders are deeply concerned by their governments’ fiscal resilience,” said Emilio Granados-Franco, head of global risks and geopolitical agenda at the World Economic Forum.

“Meanwhile, cyber threats remain a major risk due to their rapid evolution and increasingly disruptive potential.”

The survey was published by WEF together with Marsh & McLennan and Zurich Insurance.

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