"It is not for the rich, not for the well-connected and it is not 'invitation only' - just the opposite of everything in Davos.

"The interest in the Economic Forum might be down a little bit because of the global economic crisis, but here ... it is just the opposite. The interest has actually increased because of the global crisis."

Global crisis

Participants also said the global economic crisis gave legitimacy to their calls for alternative economic systems.


Tribes join global call
for change

Elizondo said: "So many here are saying that now is the critical time for these people ... to really be getting their message out because of the state of the global economy.

"They say, 'We can't trust the people of Davos to fix the world economic situation because they are the ones ... responsible for causing it'."

The annual forum, now in its ninth year, began in 2001 in the southern Brazilian city of Porto Alegre.

Five Latin American leaders are expected to attend to the gathering.