Towards A “New Economy”: Abolish Tax Havens


The abolition of tax havens is part of a “new economy” that involves the redistribution of wealth and the creation of a system for putting money back into circulation.




The pope’s initiative–“The Economy of Francesco”–generates new reflections and new paths to abolish inequalities and outlines equitable and ethically sustainable social systems, especially in relations between the North and South of the world.

“The abolition of tax havens is an absolute priority because they represent an instrument of inequality in which the weakest countries always pay. In 2013, the Credit Suisse bank released a chart known as the ‘pyramid of inequality,’ which showed that 91.7% of the world population had access to only 17% of the wealth in that year, while 0.7% of the population accessed 41%.

This image, which already appears rather merciless, is actually a benevolent representation, because from 2013 to today the inequality between rich and poor, between those who do not pay taxes and those who are harassed, has even widened. It is therefore clear how necessary a fiscal pact is: it would involve the redistribution of wealth and the creation of a system for putting money back into circulation.

We always hear that resources are lacking, but in reality, it is estimated that between 21,000 and 36,000 billion dollars have been hidden in tax havens. A sound fiscal policy, based on progressive taxation, would allow all this wealth to be put back into circulation and used for the production of common goods.”

This is what Nicoletta Dentico, an expert in international cooperation and global health explains to Agenzia Fides, offering a reflection on the strategies and actions to be taken to build the “new economy” promoted by the “Economy of Francesco” initiative.

Dentico notes: “When it comes to tax havens, we must not think only of remote places like the Antilles or the Cayman Islands. We have similar realities in Europe too; just think of Holland, Ireland or the City of London”.

But, he adds, “the abolition of tax havens must go hand in hand with another measure: the regulation of capital flows. If these low-tax areas enjoy so much good health and multiply, it is because we live in a world where capital moves freely, without any control. This favors phenomena of shadow-banking, that is, a shadow financial industry that feeds on everything that is not transparent and which only aims at profit, accentuating disparities”.

The issue of tax havens was indicated as a priority by the young participants in the “Economy of Francesco” initiative, who asked that “tax havens throughout the world be immediately abolished because money deposited in a tax haven is money stolen from our present and our future and why a new fiscal pact will be the first response to the post-Covid world”, as stated in the Final Statement and Common Commitment, the final document drawn up by young economists.

Over 2000 young economists, entrepreneurs from 120 countries, took part in the event promoted by Pope Francis, a reflection that will continue in 2021, to sign a pact for a new economy.

Tax Justice
The negative impact of non-transparent tax systems was recently highlighted by the annual report “The State of Tax Justice 2020, published last November by the Tax Justice Network (TJN), an independent international network active in analyzing the system of global taxation and tax havens. The survey shows that the annual value of taxes evaded around the world and hidden in countries with subsidized taxation is equal to 427 billion dollars.

This figure, the document reports, is equal to the wages of 34 million nurses: in the report, the loss due to tax evasion of companies and individuals on a global scale was related to the budget items allocated to health services, currently in crisis due to the pandemic.

The survey also highlights that while developing countries pay the heaviest consequences of tax evasion, the richest countries are the biggest contributors to 98% of global tax losses, approximately 419 billion dollars, every year.

In particular, the British territory of the Caymans ranks first, causing 70 billion in tax losses per year, about 16.5% of the total, followed by the United Kingdom (10%), the Netherlands (8.5%), Luxembourg (6.5%) and the United States (5.5%).

Pope Francis has spoken several times on the need to create a fair tax system: “A new ethics presupposes being aware of the need for everyone to commit to working together to close tax havens, avoid tax evasion and money laundering that rob society, as well as to tell nations the importance of defending justice and the common good above the interests of the most powerful companies and multinationals”, the Pope said in his message on the occasion of the 75th session of the General Assembly of the United Nations.

An issue that the Pope had also addressed in the encyclical Laudato Si’, arguing that “economic powers continue to justify the current world system, in which speculation and the pursuit of financial income prevail which tend to ignore any context and the effects on human dignity and the environment. Thus it becomes clear that environmental degradation and human and ethical degradation are intimately connected.”

This commitment of the Pope has been articulated in the “Motu Proprio” On transparency, control and competition in the procedures for awarding public contracts of the Holy See and Vatican City State, (June 1, 2020): among other anti-corruption laws, Pope Francis has established the exclusion of companies based in tax havens from any tenders in Vatican territory.  Published in Omnis Terra/Agenzia Fides

Share Your Thoughts

All comments are moderated

From The Same Issue

The articles and content about this issue

From The Same Issue

The articles and content about this issue

From This Topic

The articles and content about this topic

From This Topic

The articles and content about this topic


Jesus wept!

Explore Other Topics

Browse other coverage

Explore Other Topics

Browse other coverage


Presents, discusses and draws readers to reflect on issues of outmost relevance to the world today.


Very often, mission is carried out in frontier situations around the world. Those who embrace these situations have much to share.


Writer Ilsa Reyes will be exploring the richness of Pope Francis’s latest encyclical Fratelli Tutti with a view of helping our readers to get a grasp of the this beautiful papal document.


Puts to the front committed and inspiring people around the world who embrace humanitarian and religious causes with altruism and passion.


Focus on a given theme of interest touching upon social, economic and religious issues.


As the Philippines prepares to celebrate 500 years of the arrival of Christianity. Fr. James Kroeger leads us in this series into a discovery journey of the landmark events in the history of faith in the Philippine archipelago.


Aims to nurture and inspire our hearts and minds while pondering upon timely themes.


The large archipelago of the Philippines, in its richness of peoples and cultures, offers varied and challenging situations for mission.


Reflections and vocation stories that shape up the lives of young people.


As humor and goodness of heart are qualities of Christian and missionary life, the new column “Mission is fun” will be publishing some anecdotes and stories that have happened in a missionary context to lighten up the spirits and trigger a smile in our faces.


To help readers of World Mission live this year dedicated to Ecumenism, Interreligious Dialogue and Indigenous Peoples, Tita Puangco, writer and lecturer, shares in this section insights on the spirituality of communion.


A historic view of the Catholic movements that emerged from the grassroots as an inspiration by the Holy Spirit.


On the Year of Ecumenism, Interreligious Dialogue and Indigenous Peoples, radio host and communicator Ilsa Reyes, in her monthly column, encourages Christians and people of good will to be one with their fellow people of other sects, religions and tribes.


Questions to a personality of the Church or secular world on matters of interest that touch upon the lives of people.


News from the Church, the missionary world and environment that inform and form the consciences.


A feature on environmental issues that are affecting the whole world with the view of raising awareness and prompting action.


The editor gives his personal take on a given topic related to the life of the Church, the society or the world.


A monthly column on themes touching the lives of young people in the Year of the Youth in the Philippines by radio host and communicator I lsa Reyes.


A missionary living in the Chinese world shares his life-experiences made up of challenges and joyous encounters with common people.


Life stories of people who deserve to be known for who they were, what they did and what they stood for in their journey on earth.


Stories of people whom a missionary met in his life and who were touched by Jesus in mysterious ways.


Critical reflection from a Christian perspective on current issues.


Comboni missionary Fr. Lorenzo Carraro makes a journey through history pinpointing landmark events that changed the course of humanity.


A biographical sketch of a public person, known for his/her influence in the society and in the Church, showing an exemplary commitment to the service of others.


Gives fresh, truthful, and comprehensive information on issues that are of concern to all.


A column aimed at helping the readers live their Christian mission by focusing on what is essential in life and what it entails.


Peoples, events, religion, culture and the society of Asia in focus.


The human heart always searches for greatness in God’s eyes, treading the path to the fullness of life - no matter what it takes.


The subcontinent of India with its richness and variety of cultures and religions is given center stage.


The African continent in focus where Christianity is growing the fastest in the world.


Well-known writer and public speaker, Fr. Jerry Orbos, accompanies our journey of life and faith with moments of wit and inspiration based on the biblical and human wisdom.


On the year dedicated to St. Ignatius of Loyala, Fr. Lorenzo Carraro walks us through the main themes of the Ignatian spirituality.


Fr. John Taneburgo helps us to meditate every month on each of the Seven Last Words that Jesus uttered from the cross.


In this section, Fr. Lorenzo delves into the secrets and depths of the Sacred Scriptures opening for us the treasures of the Sacred Book so that the reader may delight in the knowledge of the Word of God.


Reflections about the synodal journey on a conversational and informal style to trigger reflection and sharing about the synodal path the Church has embarked upon.

Shopping Cart