In reaction to today’s release of the annual Forbes rich list that highlighted a slight downturn in fortunes of the rich elite but huge global inequalities remaining, Claire Godfrey, Head of Policy for Oxfam’s Even it Up campaign made the following statement:
“A slight fall in the number of billionaires and their fortunes doesn’t change much: a small group of people continue to make vast amounts of money from an economic system that has been rigged in their favor - at the expense of the majority.
“The Forbes rich list is not only a celebration of hard work and talent. Oxfam analysis showed that nearly two thirds of billionaire wealth in 2014 was either inherited or tainted with cronyism or monopoly.
“While just 1,810 people have a combined wealth of $6.48 trillion, hundreds of millions of people go to bed hungry every night. This grotesque level of inequality is slowing economic growth and undermining the fight against poverty. Governments must act now – starting with a crackdown on tax havens that allow super-rich individuals and companies to avoid paying billions of dollars in taxes every year.”