Financial Transaction Tax must help fight climate change and eradicate poverty worldwide says WWF



Posted on 05 May 2014  | 
Seventy per cent of the world’s poor live in rural areas where their daily lives depend on access to natural resources and to the environmental services that nature provides.
© European CommissionEnlarge

Brussels, Belgium: WWF welcomes the agreement today by 11 EU ministers [1] to implement a Financial Transaction Tax (FTT). These same leaders should now ensure that a significant proportion of the tax’s revenues is set aside for climate change actions, poverty eradication and supporting sustainable development globally. More EU countries should follow suit.

WWF is disappointed that the planned scope is narrower than originally envisaged and urges the 11 Member States to increase ambition through a step-wise approach. A broad-based FTT could raise 35 billion [2] Euros a year from the financial sector through transactions involving shares, bonds, derivatives and other assets. If more countries join this sum would increase accordingly. WWF believes that an EU Financial Transaction Tax can go a long way to curb financial speculation and at the same time provide revenue to support essential public services and jobs in Europe and help those hardest hit by the economic crisis and climate change in the rest of the world.

Reacting to today’s announcement, Sally Nicholson, Development Policy and Finance Manager at WWF European Policy Office, said:

“By agreeing on a Financial Transaction Tax today, eleven European countries have proved they are ready to make the financial sector pay their dues towards sustainable development. It is now up to other EU countries to follow suit.

But the FTT’s revenues shouldn’t be a blank check to fill the States’ coffers. Governments must agree to spend a good chunk of these on eradicating poverty and fighting climate change.

It would send a strong signal that the EU believes in living up to its international commitments in spite of economic setbacks at home and underline EU's continued leadership in development.”


ENDS

Note to the editors:

[1] The FFT has been agreed through the EU’s enhanced cooperation procedure by Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Austria, Belgium, Estonia, Greece, Portugal, Slovakia and Slovenia.
[2] German Institute for Economic Research (DIW)


For further information:

Sally Nicholson
Manager Development Policy and Finance
WWF European Policy Office
snicholson@wwf.eu
Phone: +32 2 740 0937
Mobile: +32 492 59 14 01

Audrey Gueudet
Climate & Energy Media and Communication Officer
WWF European Policy Officer
agueudet@wwf.eu
Phone: +32 2 743 88 06 
Mobile: + 32 494 03 20 27

Source of the article
Seventy per cent of the world’s poor live in rural areas where their daily lives depend on access to natural resources and to the environmental services that nature provides.
© European Commission Enlarge

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required