Taxing matters

Most Africans are poor. Everyone knows that. But they needn't be. On current estimates, for every dollar of aid that flows into Africa, five dollars of financial assets flow out into private bank accounts in the Rich World. Money that's never taxed. Africa has the fastest growth of millionaires in the world, but the burden for building much needed infrastructure keeps on getting pushed back to those who can least afford to pay. For African economies straining under the burden of debt and the conditions that are placed on it, tax revenue means self-reliance, economic freedom, and money to improve education and health. So why are African countries relying on aid, rather than taxing those who profit most from their countries? In what is emerging as a major social justice issue for this decade, today's guests challenge the accountants and politicians of the world to 'Go figure!'

  • Investigative journalist and author, Nicholas Shaxson reveals how President Omar Bongo of Gabon maintained a giant offshore slush fund, fed by African oil and hooked up to tax havens.
  • Greg Muttitt from London NGO PLATFORM lifts the lid on how the International Tax and Investment Center - a registered charity - manipulates governments for six of the world’s biggest oil companies.
  • With money bouncing across borders throughout today’s program, today’s CD is called Rumba without borders: Rumba Sin Fronteras - performed by Cuban percussionist Pancho Quinto together with a long list of his Havana friends. It’s a collaboration spanning a number of generations creating new frontiers in Afro-Cuban beats.

    Listen now (click the play button left) or download the program (click this link)

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