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US businessman Warren Buffett stokes up the tax debate

By Alasdair Roxburgh | 18 August 2011

We were fascinated to see the comments made by US industrialist Warren Buffett about the levels of tax the super rich in America pay. We weren’t alone – his name has been trending on Twitter all week.

Tax is a big issue of discussion anywhere in the world, and in the US it is particularly sensitive. So when a leading investor like Buffett – a man whose worth, estimated at around $50bn, has seen him ranked among the world’s wealthiest people for the last few years - comes out saying the tax system favours the rich and needs reform, it tends to make big news.

Buffett’s comments reflect some of the increasing debate both in his home country and around the world on tax payments – or lack of them – by the super rich and big companies.

Christian Aid's Trace the Tax campaign is built on the belief that the solution to taxdodging by businesses lies with the companies and with investors like Buffett.

What is needed is greater transparency to make companies more accountable. And we will only get this with backing from companies, investors and politicians alike.

Hopefully Buffett’s comments will have sparked greater debate and will lead to a solution to taxdodging for the benefit of the world’s poorest.

Read 'Stop Coddling the Super-Rich' by Warren Buffett in the New York Times

 

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 About the author

Alasdair Roxburgh

Alasdair Roxburgh is our churches campaigns manager


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