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World set to have its first trillionaire, says Oxfam report and many believe we've failed as a society

The gap between the world's richest and poor widens with every passing day and the growth of the number of billionaires is a red flag.

World set to have its first trillionaire, says Oxfam report and many believe we've failed as a society
Representative Cover Image Source: Pexels | Steve Johnson; Oxfam International | Amitabh Behar

People are always taught to excel in whatever they do and everyone dreams to climb higher on life’s ladder. While we all strive for personal growth, there's no question that we are all ultimately supported and knitted together by the threads of the community. With time, we have seen individuals, companies and governments strive for the growth of individuals over that of the community and we are bearing witness to the results of those efforts. Oxfam International published a report that revealed that the world could find its first trillionaire in the coming years. It may sound like great news, but many believe it's also a failure of society and a reflection of the lack of investment in community development. The report further revealed that the wealth of the world’s five richest men has doubled since 2020.

Representative Image Source: Pexels| Beytlik
Representative Image Source: Pexels| Beytlik

 



 

 

However, this was at the cost of 5 billion people becoming poorer, as the report showed an inverse proportion between the rich and the poor. As the world expects its first trillionaire, the rate of increasing poverty could cause over 2 centuries to end. The rate of the world’s richest men’s increasing fortune has doubled from $405 to $869 billion at a rate of $14 billion per hour, the detailed estimates reveal that the world can expect its first trillionaire at this rate in exchange for 229 years of unending poverty.  “We’re witnessing the beginnings of a decade of division, with billions of people shouldering the economic shockwaves of the pandemic, inflation, and war, while billionaires’ fortunes boom,” said Amitabh Behar, Oxfam International interim Executive Director.


 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Oxfam in Asia (@oxfaminasia)


 

 



 

 

“This inequality is no accident; the billionaire class is ensuring corporations deliver more wealth to them at the expense of everyone else,” said Behar. He added that corporate power, monopoly and other factors are not just adding to the rich’s wealth but also become a tool for inequality. “No corporation or individual should have this much power over our economies and our lives —to be clear, nobody should have a billion dollars,” he added. With several numbers to add to the news, the fact remains the same, community development is being suppressed in exchange for monopoly.


 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Oxfam US (@oxfamamerica)


 

Behar added to the intensity of the situation by explaining the drastic toll it can take on society at large. “Monopolies harm innovation and crush workers and smaller businesses. The world hasn’t forgotten how pharma monopolies deprived millions of people of COVID-19 vaccines, creating a racist vaccine apartheid while minting a new club of billionaires,” he said. People are hustling and bustling themselves out to make a meager living. Some are even working two or more jobs to feed their families and the division visible is beyond dangerous. Nearly 800 million workers have lost the battle to inflation, which has led to a loss of $1.5 trillion in society.



 

 


 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Oxfam in Asia (@oxfaminasia)


 

Behar is urging governments to act, but there is human and citizen effort required too. “Governments must intervene to break up monopolies, empower workers, tax these massive corporate profits and, crucially, invest in a new era of public goods and services,” said Behar. “Every corporation has a responsibility to act, but very few are. Governments must step up,” he added. A few measures suggested by the organization were revitalizing the state in terms of healthcare and other provisions and reining power by keeping a check on monopolies. It was also suggested that businesses be reinvented to avoid monopolistic profit.



 

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