On February 19 Ecuador is set to become the first country to hold a national referendum over the issue of tax havens.
If the referendum is passed, politicians and public servants will have a year from the referendum date to repatriate their money (from tax havens) or face the sack.
It is estimated that $30 billion dollars, a sum equivalent to one third of Ecuador’s GDP, is hidden away in tax havens abroad.
Ecuador is by no means alone. According to Oxfam, a conservative calculation of the money hidden in tax havens worldwide from wealthy individuals alone, not counting multinational corporations, is $7.6 trillion US dollars (see for example https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/feb/06/uk-tax-haven-bermuda-financial-secrecy-offshore-companies )
Since the Panama papers, there has never been a better time to construct a global consensus powerful enough to overcome the huge vested interests at play.
We welcome this innovative referendum and hope that Ecuador’s leadership on this issue will inspire other governments to make bold moves too.
Colin Burgon, Labour Friends of Progressive Latin America
Rosie Cooper MP
Victoria Brittain, Writer, Journalist & Playwright
Gail Cartmail, Acting General Secretary, Unite
Dave Prentis, General Secretary, UNISON
Julie Morgan, Welsh AM
Neil Findlay MSP
Bruce Kent, Peace Campaigner
Shelly Asquith, Vice President (Welfare), National Union of Students
Andy de la Tour, Actor
John Hendy QC, Queen's Council Barrister
Elaine Smith MSP
Mick Whelan, General Secretary, ASLEF
Mike Hedges, Welsh AM
Chris Williamson, Friends of Ecuador
You can find out more from Friends of Ecuador at:
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