The cost of disputes and violence to the world economy far outstrips the value of the global logistics sector, Mohammed Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs, UAE, said at the opening address of the World Government Summit (WGS) in Dubai.

The value of the world’s logistics sector is currently $8 trillion, however, the cost to world economies from disputes and violence is $17 trillion, Al Gergawi said.

He told delegates that the world must “invest on what unites us, not what divides us,” adding that economic fragmentation including barriers to trade cost the world economy 7% of GDP in 2022.

Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman, World Economic Forum, said we need to be prepared for a world that changes faster than ever and for the fusion of physical, digital and biological, the start of the World Governments Summit heard. 

He said the world has already seen great change since the advent of the Internet 30 years ago and the arrival of social media around 25 years ago.

“We will see say the same speed of change in the next 10 years,” he said, adding that we have entered the exponential growth phase of technology including artificial intelligence. 

At the same time, he said the world must focus on investing in the infrastructure for the future.

“There is too much emphasis on preserving what we have,” he said, which took the form of subsidies rather than incentives. 

(Reporting by Imogen Lillywhite; editing by Seban Scaria)