The world's billionaires, of which there are only 2,153, have more wealth than 4.6 billion people, accounting for 60% of the Earth's population, according to an Oxfam International study released Monday.
Among the shocking figures to illustrate the degree of global inequality in the report is the world's 22 wealthiest men have more wealth than all the women combined in Africa, according to a press release.
The problem has only become worse over recent years, as the number of billionaires has doubled in the past decade at the same time masses of people struggle to survive economically, according to the study, called "Time to Care."
"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 the press release. "Our broken economies are lining the pockets of billionaires and big business at the expense of ordinary men and women. No wonder people are starting to question whether billionaires should even exist."
The report argues there are straightforward ways to reduce this inequality, stating for example: There would be enough funds to invest in 117 million jobs in such crucial sectors as caring for the elderly, childcare, education, and health, if the richest 1% had to pay a mere 0.5% additional extra tax on their wealth for the next 10 years.
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