Putin to Speak at Davos Opening

ZURICH — Prime Minister Vladimir Putin will address the opening of the annual World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, with the financial crisis prompting a record number of business and political leaders to register.

"The record level of annual meeting registrations … shows the desire for us to collectively deal with the broader problems facing us all," Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum, said late Tuesday.

"Participants will have an historic opportunity to tackle the key issues facing the world at the moment."

Putin will address the opening of the meeting on Jan. 28. More than 20 heads of state or government, including other Group of Eight countries, have already confirmed their attendance, the organizers said, as well as close to 1,000 business leaders.

As the financial crisis escalated in recent weeks, the WEF restructured the Jan. 28-Feb. 1 meeting at the Swiss mountain resort under a new theme: "Shaping the Post-Crisis World."