Anti-poverty charity reveals industries that cashed in on Covid — Analysis
Pharma, food, energy and tech sectors are all profiting from world’s pain, Oxfam says
Every 30 minutes, a new billionaire appears in the tech, pharmaceutical, and food industries. “rigged”Oxfam on Monday reported that the economic system is in crisis. The charity said that with commodity prices rising, more than 263 million people could fall into poverty in this year’s future if the wealth is not redistributed. It directed the message at the Davos gathering of ultra-rich Swiss.
Oxfam reports are now available “Profiting from Pain”The forum was held in conjunction with the first World Economic Forum that had been held face to face since the Covid-19 epidemic. Oxfam urged the rich and powerful people who gathered this week in Switzerland, to make a decision about whether or not they want to be included. “proxies for the billionaire class who plunder their economies”Do something in the interests of mankind.
“The extremely rich and powerful are profiting from pain and suffering. This is unconscionable,”Gabriela Bucher is the Executive Director at Oxfam International. “This grotesque inequality is breaking the bonds that hold us together as humanity. This is dangerous, divisive and corrosive. This is inequality that literally kills.”
According to Oxfam’s calculations, 573 people became new billionaires during the pandemic. In the 24 months following the Covid-19 crisis, the combined wealth of all members of this class grew more than in any other period over the past 23 years. According to the brief, 13.9% now represents the total wealth of billionaires, an increase of 4.4% from 2000.
Oxfam stated that the greatest benefits were felt in the areas of food, pharmaceuticals, and technology. Moderna, Pfizer and others became billionaires from the pandemic. They were able to enjoy a huge discount on vaccines for Covid-19.
Although their product development was paid for by the public, Oxfam estimated that governments are being charged up to 24x more than what it costs to produce generic products. According to the group, vaccines brought Big Pharma an estimated $1,000 per second in profits.
Two years ago, billionaires in food and agriculture saw an increase of 45% in their wealth. Their total reached $382 billion and they added 62 members to their ranks. Oxfam reported that 12 billionaires are now owned by the Cargill family, up from eight prior to the pandemic. According to the calculations, $238 billion is now the collective value of Walton’s family which holds roughly half the stock in Walmart.
The combined profits of the five largest oil companies in America, Shell, TotalEnergies (Exxon), and Chevron were $82 bn. Oxfam stated that oil saw its profit margins increase by two-thirds during the Pandemic. Billionaires in oil, gas and coal have seen their wealth increase by $53.3 billion or 24% over the last two years.
According to the short, tech also enjoyed rapid growth during the pandemic. It produced many of the richest people in the world. Apple, Microsoft, Tesla,
Alphabet and Amazon made $271 billion in profits in 2021. This is almost double the amount in 2019 Technology entrepreneurs account for seven out of the ten wealthiest people on the planet.
“Billionaires’ fortunes have not increased because they are now smarter or working harder. Worker’s are more productive, working longer hours and under worse conditions. The super-rich have rigged the system with impunity for decades and they are now reaping the benefits,”Bucher stated.
“They have seized a shocking amount of the world’s wealth as a result of privatization and monopolies, gutting regulation and workers’ rights while stashing their cash in tax havens – all with the complicity of governments,”She added.
Oxfam predicts that 263 million people will fall into poverty by 2022, as prices for essential goods like food have risen to an all-time high. This group suggests taxing the super-rich in order to remedy the crisis. It called for a temporary solidarity tax to address the pandemic, taxes on excessive profits to stop crisis profiteering, and permanent wealth taxes that rein in the political and economic power of large corporations and wealthy people.