The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum is going to host on its sidelines the XIX World Festival of Youth and Students, which is to be held in Sochi on October 14–22, 2017. The Festival is recognised as the event of the year for the youth with over 20,000 participants representing 150 countries. Alongside the cultural and sports elements, the organisers have announced an extensive discussion programme comprising science conferences, panel talks, public lectures, etc. At least two of the Forum's five key topics are going to be dedicated to the global economic agenda, including Global Economy and Knowledge Economy.
It is the third time now that Russia is hosting the Festival, which dates back 70 years from now. Both of the earlier events in Russia (VI Festival in 1957 and XII Festival in 1985) marked turning points in the Russian history: the Khrushchev Thaw and the advent of the Perestroika. Now that modern technologies are rapidly advancing, new formats of economic cooperation emerge by the minute, and global political threats are building up, all nations on our planet are required as much as ever to demonstrate their capacity for consolidation and dialogue. Youth will be the defining force behind the future world order, hence the importance of its position.
Mr Ahmad Alhendawi, UN Secretary General's Envoy on Youth, recently commented in relation to the upcoming XIX World Festival: "We stand for bringing people together, bringing the youth together. At a time with so many challenges and hurdles in world politics, I hope that people can get together and try to charter a new way ahead, which will be based on mutual understanding and recognising one another so that they can work to promote peace and achieve sustainable development goals."