New Zealand is unlikely to escape the volatility shaking world markets, CNN's Richard Quest has warned.

Quest, host of Quest Means Business, spoke to the New Zealand Herald from Davos, Switzerland, where the World Economic Forum is heading into its final day.

The Forum, a gathering of the world's political and business leaders, is one of the year's major international events. It is a regular fixture for prime ministers and executives, who gather in the tiny mountain resort to discuss how to tackle issues including the financial markets, terrorism and environmental challenges.

This year the regular VIPs were joined by U2 singer Bono, film star Leonardo DiCaprio and rapper


Quest explained why New Zealand, despite its seeming resilience, should be worried about the global financial slide.

"New Zealand obviously is fully integrated into the global economy," Quest said. And regardless of its isolated geography in the global economy, "no country is an island."

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Quest said the mood at Davos was one of "bewilderment," as the markets slumped. Investors are being spooked in part by China, a global powerhouse whose economy is slowing.

"Economies in some parts of the world are actually doing pretty well. But the pretty is a small 'p' and the 'well' isn't a very big well," Quest said.

"New Zealand's economy may be more immune... from the waves of disruption elsewhere but I guarantee you, it's not that immune."

Listen to Quest explain why the world is on edge - and why New Zealand must not be complacent.