Xi to be first Chinese president to attend Davos forum

China's President Xi Jinping will attend the World Economic Forum next week, becoming the first Chinese head of state to do so.

A spokesman of China's foreign ministry said Tuesday that as part of an official visit to Switzerland, Xi will attend the annual economic meeting in the ski resort of Davos on Jan. 17.

Xi's attendance comes as China has sought to be more influential globally and present the Asian power as a force for stability and champion of globalization and opponent of protectionism.

Lu Kang, the spokesman, says Xi's Jan. 15-18 trip to Switzerland will also include visits to the offices of the United Nations and the World Health Organization in Geneva, and the International Olympics Committee's headquarters in Lausanne.