December 12, 2012

The latest programme by the BBC on Why Poverty? Stealing Africa highlights issues of international trade and shows explicitly how Africa is missing out on needed tax reserves.

The BBC describes the programme as so ‘Ruschlikon is a village in Switzerland with a very low tax rate and very wealthy residents. There is so much money in the public coffers that the mayor can’t spend it all, largely thanks to the contribution from one resident – Ivan Glasenberg, CEO of commodities giant Glencore. However, Glencore’s copper mines in Zambia don’t generate similar tax windfalls for Zambians. The country has the third largest copper reserves in the world, but 60 per cent of the population live on less than $1 a day and 80 per cent are unemployed. Christoffer Guldbrandsen investigates the dark heart of the tax system employed by multi-nationals and asks how much profit is fair.’

This programme is fascinating, with interviews from the deputy Prime Minister of Zambia, members of The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund and members of the Zambian cabinet. You can access the programme by clicking here. Enjoy!

This programme goes a long way to explaining why the community that we work with in Linda has been neglected by the local and national government and left without access to clean water, sanitation, health care and education. The picture is bigger than just Zambia, there are international forces at play. Thank you BBC.