In an address read by Cardinal Peter Turkson at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the leader of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics said it was intolerable that thousands die each day from hunger.
The pope urged leaders to adopt a new "political and business mentality" and to put their skills to work for the benefit of those living in dire poverty.
"I ask you to ensure humanity is served by wealth and not ruled by it," he said.
The event sees global leaders congregate to discuss pressing world issues. Heads of state, central bankers and CEOs such as Yahoo's (Fortune 500) , Marissa Meyer and Coca-Cola's (Fortune 500) Muhtar Kent are attending. ,
Since taking up his post in March 2013, Pope Francis has been outspoken about the problem of income equality, a central topic of this year's conference.
Pope Francis said tackling inequality would require action to achieve a better distribution of wealth, create jobs and "an integral promotion of the poor which goes beyond a simple welfare mentality."
President Obama is due to visit the Pope on March 27. The White House said President Obama was looking forward to discussing "their shared commitment to fighting poverty and growing inequality."
Pope Francis has given the Vatican a public relations boost, inspiring widespread admiration with deeds such as inviting homeless men to his birthday meal and taking a teenage boy with Down syndrome on a ride on his Popemobile.
"It's been like a springtime for all of us," Cardinal Turkson told CNN. "He's breathed new life into Church leadership."
Visits to the Vatican roughly tripled last year as people flocked to see him.
|$20 Amazon Prime hike won't scare off customers|
|Meet the SAT tutor to the 1%|
|Madoff employee trial nears the end|
|Safety group claims 303 deaths linked to recalled GM cars|
|Number of millionaire households in the U.S. reaches high|