Today’s World Wealth Report from Capgemini shows that times have never been better for the world’s wealthiest - since 2009 more than 4.5 million new millionaires have been created, rising to a total of 15.4 million millionaires across the world last year. Yet while the wealthy prosper, 702 million people living in extreme poverty are being left behind.
This global tax platform represents a step in a long road towards building a fairer and more transparent global tax system. The platform must be able to deliver tangible results and combat inequality, but most importantly, it must give the poorest countries a voice.
At the close of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund’s Spring Meetings in Washington, Chris Stalker, Acting Head of Oxfam International’s Washington office, commented on the week's developments.
“It’s great to hear tough talk from both Jim Kim and Christine Lagarde on ending tax havens. We’ve seen this happen time and time again: when the richest fail to pay their fair share, the budgets for education, health, and other social services that the poorest depend on, are the first to get slashed," said Chris Stalker, acting head of Oxfam International's Washington office.
“In the Inspection Panel's findings, the Bank is still repeatedly failing to take the most basic steps needed to avoid harm. Steps like counting how many people are affected, or making information available in local languages are still neglected," said Kate Geary, Oxfam's land rights expert.
Following the abuses revealed in the Panama Papers, world leaders attending the Spring Meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund this week must seize the moment to take decisive action and help end the era of tax havens, said Oxfam today.
Fifty one of the 68 companies that were lent money by the World Bank’s private lending arm in 2015 to finance investments in sub-Saharan Africa use tax havens, Oxfam revealed today.
Oxfam is calling on the World Bank Group to put safeguards in place to ensure that its clients can prove they are paying their fair share of tax.
Christine Lagarde, the International Monetary Fund’s managing director, and Jim Yong Kim, president of the World Bank, spoke Tuesday about their institutions’ priorities ahead of next week’s spring meetings in Washington.
The assassination last week of Honduran activist Berta Cáceres – who championed the cause of indigenous land rights – shows that international companies have no place now in continuing their support for the Agua Zarca dam she was fighting against.