The world’s 2,153 billionaires control more wealth than the poorest 4.6 billion people combined who comprise 60 percent of the globe’s population, according to a new report from Oxfam.
The report also says that the 22 richest men in the world have more wealth than all of the women in Africa. Women and girls perform 12.5 billion hours of unpaid care work daily, which Oxfam says adds $10.8 trillion annually to the global economy.
The globe’s richest 1 percent control more than twice the amount of wealth as 6.9 billion people, the report adds.
The poverty-focused nonprofit, which is based in Nairobi, issued the “Time to Care” report on Monday ahead of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
The report argues that governments around the world are not doing enough to address economic inequality, and urges them to invest in national care systems and introduce progressive taxation as “crucial” first steps to address the issue.
“The gap between rich and poor can't be resolved without deliberate inequality-busting policies, and too few governments are committed to these,” Oxfam India CEO Amitabh Behar said in a statement.
“Governments created the inequality crisis —they must act now to end it. They must ensure corporations and wealthy individuals pay their fair share of tax and increase investment in public services and infrastructure,” Behar, who is representing Oxfam at Davos this year, said.
“They must pass laws to tackle the huge amount of care work done by women and girls, and ensure that people who do some of the most important jobs in our society —caring for our parents, our children and the most vulnerable— are paid a living wage,” Behar said.