Carlos Slim, the world’s wealthiest man, takes issue with Warren Buffett and Bill Gates over their approach to charity.
The two Americans have pledged to give at least 50 percent of their wealth away and have urged other billionaires to do the same. But that’s not the best solution for the world’s woes, says the Mexican Slim, whose net worth is estimated at $53 billion.
"What we need to do as businessmen, is to help to solve the problems, the social problems," he tells CNBC. "To fight poverty, but not by charity."
Giving so much money to charity also would create huge tax deductions, depriving governments of much-needed tax revenue, Slim maintains.
"I think it will be a big mistake that companies like Microsoft, Apple — the leaders of the world in technology — be sold by the founders to put the cash to fund charities,” Slim argues. “They shouldn't. It is more important that they continue manage the companies."
Apple CEO Steve Jobs hasn’t signed on to Buffett and Gates’ pledge.
An editorial in The Economist echoes Slim’s view.
“Even Gates, who was widely reviled for his business activities, probably did more good by amassing his fortune than he is doing by giving it away,” the piece states.
“The computer revolution he helped to bring about transformed the way people handle information. Perhaps his foundation will spur some equally momentous change, but it seems unlikely.”
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