Newly re-elected British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will not attend next month’s Davos summit, nor will he send any ministers, a government source said Tuesday. After leading his Conservative Party last week to its biggest election win since Margaret Thatcher’s landslide victory of 1987, Johnson pledged to run a “people’s government” that would deliver Brexit and repay the trust placed in him by voters in former strongholds of his Labour opponents.
“Our focus is on delivering for the people, not champagne with billionaires,” the source said, referring to the annual gathering in the Swiss ski resort of politicians, business leaders and celebrities.
The move echoes U.S. President Donald Trump, who banned senior officials from attending Davos in 2017 shortly after he took office. Johnson attended Davos when he was London mayor. The 2020 event will be held from Jan. 21 to Jan. 24. He told the BBC in 2013 it was a “constellation of egos involving massive mutual orgies of adulation, but it is very important, because you do meet people here who you can encourage to invest.”
Johnson’s predecessor as prime minister, Theresa May, did not attend last year’s event due to the pressures of Brexit, but sent her trade minister.