Oxfam report shows 1% rich usurped 63% of the world’s wealth from 2020 to 2022

A recent Oxfam report shows that the top 1% rich of the world seized 63% of the global wealth from 2020 to 2022, while the rest 99% got 37%.

Oxfam report shows 1% rich usurped 63% of the world's wealth from 2020 to 2022

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The top 1% of the world’s richest people have captured almost two-thirds of the new wealth generated after the 2020 coronavirus pandemic. Oxfam has given this information in a new report. The Oxfam report, titled “Survival of the Richest”, was released on Monday, January 16th, to coincide with the annual World Economic Forum (WEF) meeting in Davos, Switzerland.

According to the Oxfam report, the world produced new wealth worth US$42 trillion between 2020 and 2022. The world’s top 1% rich got 63% of this wealth, ie, $26 trillion, while the rest, $16 trillion, ie, 37%, went to the 99%.

The Oxfam report shows that the world’s billionaire wealth is growing by $2.7 bn per day. At the same time, at least 1.7 billion working people currently live in countries where inflation is easily outstripping their wages.

It has been claimed that 10% of the world’s population, about 82m people, have been starving. According to the Oxfam report, women and girls are 60% of the world’s starving population.

At the same time, half of the world’s billionaires live in countries with no inheritance tax for their direct descendants. Oxfam report says these billionaires are on track to leave $5 trillion to their heirs, more than Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP).

The Oxfam report also shows that in 2022, the wealth of billionaires increased significantly due to the increase in profits from food products and energy. Around 95 food and energy companies are said to double their profits in 2022. These companies have made a whopping $306 bn in windfall profits, and they have distributed $257 bn of that profit, ie, 84%, to ultra-rich shareholders.

The Walton family, which owns half of Walmart, earned $8.5 billion more in 2022 vis-à-vis 2021. Gautam Adani, the world’s second-richest man known to be close to India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), has seen his wealth soar by nearly $42 bn in 2022.

The Oxfam report strongly criticised how large corporates and billionaires have been given tax breaks in most countries in the world’s neo-liberal economic system for the past four decades.

According to an Oxfam report, a 5% tax on the wealth of the world’s rich and ultra-rich would raise $1.7 trillion yearly, enough to lift two billion people out of poverty.

Oxfam International Executive Director Gabriela Butcher said, “Taxing the super-rich and big corporations is the door out of today’s overlapping crises. It’s time we demolish the convenient myth that tax cuts for the richest result in their wealth somehow ‘trickling down’ to everyone else. Forty years of tax cuts for the super-rich have shown that a rising tide doesn’t lift all ships —just the superyachts.”

“While ordinary people are sacrificing for basic necessities like food, the super-rich are living beyond their wildest dreams. In just two years, this decade is shaping up to be the best decade yet for billionaires”, Butcher added.

The report found that 75% of the world’s governments are on austerity measures, slashing public spending, and will cut education and health expenses by nearly $7.8 trillion over the next five years, hitting the poor and marginalised.

The World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos brings together business and political leaders to discuss global political and economic issues. The summit, which runs from Monday to Friday, will be attended by 52 heads of state and nearly 600 CEOs.

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