11 May 2014
Bribery, corruption and multinational tax dodging, as well as the secrecy and lack of transparency that facilitates them, are a massive barrier to improving the wellbeing of the poorest people in the world. Developing countries lose over US$1 trillion through illicit financial flows each year.
In the year 2000, All 189 UN member state governments committed to the eight promises of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in order to “free our fellow men, women and children from the abject and dehumanising conditions of extreme poverty”.
Much progress has been made but the world is still a long way from meeting its commitment to the world’s poor. It has become evident that while aid helps to accelerate progress, corruption acts as a brake. The world cannot deliver on its promises unless we address the issue of corruption head on.
The Shine the Light campaign is asking the leaders of the world's most economically powerful nations, the G20, to take practical steps that promote greater transparency in the financial affairs of business, government and individuals. Visit the website to learn how to support the campaign.
Meanwhile in landmark decision European finance ministers meeting in Brussels last week agreed to introduce a Financial Transaction Tax (sometimes called the Tobin Tax or Robin Hood Tax) from the beginning of 2016. The tax, which would be levied on any any transaction, anywhere in the world, carried out by a financial entity which is based in one of the 11 EU states and could bring in 30-35 billion euros, according to the European Commission, money which can be used in combatting poverty and climate change.