Gordhan: Rich must do more
The rich should contribute more to lessen social inequalities , according to Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.
Speaking at the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes, in Cape Town, Gordhan said tax administrators should see their role as helping to stem the tide of social injustices.
He said tax administrators should ask themselves how they could create a new morality and values code.
"We [the tax administrators] should create a new obligation on privileged people throughout the world to help those 2billion people who live on less than $2 a day.
"We [governments] do have an obligation to grow economies and create jobs, and redistribute the benefits that accrue from economic growth, otherwise we will create more inequality in the world," he said.
Gordhan said tax administrators should help narrow the income gap through better collection and getting ahead of the "creativity curve" that characterises tax planning.
"What they [tax advisers] will call the creativity that applies to tax planning by keeping a step ahead [of tax authorities] through ingenuity and the surprise factor on the one hand, and the secrecy factor on the other hand, is in order not to pay their fair share," he said.
Gordhan pointed to recent work by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, saying it had failed to answer the fundamental question of how to bridge inequality in societies.
Gordhan said it has been suggested that technology had contributed to structural unemployment in many economies. Governments, he said, must stimulate economic growth to create job-absorbing industries. - I-Net Bridge