Chief commercial officer says navigating the situation will require ‘greater cooperation between the public and private sectors’

A predominantly negative outlook over the short-term looms in the global risk landscape and is expected to worsen over the long-term.

That was according to the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) latest Global Risks Report 2024, published yesterday (10 January 2024), which further highlighted that uncertainty in the sector was being caused by the impacts of political strife and violent conflicts, with the long-term outlook potentially bringing “further shocks” to the market.

The report, which was published in partnership with Marsh and Zurich Insurance, also highlighted WEF’s Global Risks Perception Survey (GRPS) 2023-2024, which found that only 16% of respondents expect a stable or calm outlook in the next two years.

And, over a 10-year timeframe, 63% of respondents expect a stormy or turbulent outlook, with less than 10% expecting a calm or stable situation.

It also found that 54% of respondents anticipate some instability and a moderate risk of global catastrophes in the short-term.

Responses for the survey were collected from 4 September to 9 October 2023 from the WEF’s multistakeholder communities. A total of 1,852 responses were received.

Carolina Klint, Marsh McLennan’s Europe chief commercial officer, said that “it will take a relentless focus to build resilience at organisational, country and international levels – and greater cooperation between the public and private sectors – to navigate this rapidly evolving risk landscape”.

Market concerns

Meanwhile, Marsh found that the top five risks that respondents felt were most likely to present a material crisis on a global scale this year were extreme weather (66%) artificial intelligence (AI) (53%), generated misinformation and disinformation (53%), societal and or political polarisation (46%), cost of living crisis (42%) and cyber attacks (39%).

Risks relating to the financial, technology and real-estate sectors were towards the bottom of respondents’ concerns for 2024.

Klint highlighted that AI breakthroughs would ”radically disrupt the risk outlook for organisations, with many struggling to react to threats arising from misinformation, disintermediation and strategic miscalculation”.

“At the same time, companies are having to negotiate supply chains made more complex by geopolitics and climate change and cyber threats from a growing number of malicious actors,” she added.