Protesters take part in a protest against the World Economic Forum (WEF) during the WEF Annual Meeting in Davos on May 22, 2022.
Fabris Kafrini | AFP | Getty Images
A group of more than 150 millionaires is urging elite participants in this year’s World Economic Forum in Davos to impose more taxes on them.
The group, known as “Patriot Millionaires”, issued an open letter on Monday urging WEF participants to “recognize the dangers of uncontrolled wealth inequality around the world and publicly support efforts to tax the rich.”
“Tax us, the rich, and tax us now,” the letter said, which included actor Mark Rafalo and heir Abigail Disney’s signatories.
They explained in the letter that inequality in the international tax system has created mistrust between the people of the world and its wealthy elites.
To restore that confidence, the group argued, it needed “a complete overhaul of a system that has so far been deliberately designed to make the rich richer.”
“To put it simply, the rich have to pay taxes to restore confidence,” the millionaires said.
They said the WEF Davos summit was not worthy of the world’s trust right now, due to a lack of “tangible value” from discussions at previous events.
Some millionaires even protested in Davos over the weekend in favor of the tax.
Crisis of life
Rising prices are increasing the cost of living around the world, prompting the rich to call for higher taxes.
The Patriot Millionaires cited an Oxfam summary released Monday, which found that one billionaire was mined every 30 hours for the first two years of the Covid-19 epidemic. Oxfam estimates that by 2022, nearly a million people will be living in extreme poverty at the same rate.
Julia Davis, a founding member of Patriotic Millionaires UK, says that “as scandalous as governments seem to be inactive in dealing with the cost of living, it is equally scandalous that they allow so few people to have extreme wealth in their hands.”
Davis added that “global crises are not accidental, they are the result of poor economic design.”
‘Run Down’ in Corporate Taxes
Speaking to CNBC’s Geoff Cutmore at a panel in Davos on Tuesday, Oxfam’s executive director Gabriela Butcher said last year’s multilateral agreement, which offered companies at least 15% tax on earnings, was not enough.
The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development tax reform agreement was signed by 136 countries and jurisdictions in October, although it has not yet been implemented.
Butcher noted that if the agreed rate, set by global tax experts, is set at 25%, it would add another 17 17 billion to the developing world.
Butcher was also concerned that the deal, at its current level, would see a “bottom-up race” for corporate taxes and that higher-rate countries could actually bring them down.
“There is a danger that we are not really using this important tool at a time when we have so many competitive crises,” he said, referring to the hunger crisis in both the developing world and rich countries due to rising cost of living. .
Butcher later said that “you can accumulate as much wealth as you want, but it doesn’t make much sense if everything around you ends up.”