Mykolas Rambus, president of the Singaporean consulting company Wealth-X, which alongside UBS edits an annual global report on ‘ultra-rich’ (those whose heritage reaches at least $ 30 million), said that in Latin America 15,000 of them were recorded, an increase of 5% in 2014.
The number of billionaires, people whose heritage is at least $ 1,000 million, rose 38% to reach 151 individuals, more than in any other region of the planet. Some fortunes were divided among several heirs, who in turn became multimillionaires.
This rise of the wealthy classes is in sharp contrast to the social reality of the region. For example, in Nicaragua, where 42.5% of the population is poor, 210 ‘ultra-rich’ were recorded by Wealth-X, with a combined fortune of $ 30,000 million, or 254% of national GDP.
“The main feature of inequality in Latin America is not the large number of the poor, but the high concentration of wealth among a small number,” says Juan Pablo Jimenez, an expert from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC).
And the latter “pay very little tax.” “Taxes on income and wealth are very low, inheritant taxes are almost nonexistent,” Jimenez said, calling for “greater fiscal pressure on those with more “to finance public services and social spending. ”
In September, the Oxfam NGO also called for “tax justice in order to reduce inequality in Latin America and the Caribbean.”
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