Nearly 800 million people suffer from hunger in the world, mainly in the so-called “developing” countries. Now, in these countries, every year at least 250 billion euros in tax revenues disappear to tax havens – that’s 6 times the amount needed annually to fight and conquer hunger by 2025 (1).
“It is estimated that 85% to 90% of these assets [private funds invested in tax havens] belong to less than 10 million people – or 0.014% of the world population – and at least a third of those assets belong to the 100,000 richest families in the world, with each having at least 30 million dollars” writes US economist James S. Henry. It’s the wealthy who profit most from the reduction of tax revenues to fraud, which perpetuates and exacerbates inequalities.
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Remember the Panama Papers leak..anyone?? If you do, then several African nations are amongst you. Obscure “customers” within their borders, according to leaks, were linked to offshore activities on the continent. Welcome to a new chapter of a forgotten scandal. It’s complete with inquiries pending and leaders questioned, topped off with journalists allegedly warned to stay away.
Mossack Fonseca, a firm center-piecing the Panama papers leak, sent business cards to several customers in Africa in 2010. According to ICIJ, the firm regarded the continent as “target territory”, filled with wealthy “customers”. However, since the leak–which outed everyone and everything from celebrities to military contractors–many of those customers have been questioned by African governments.
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