Tax in a Fair World

Peter Graves | Sydney Morning Herald | 17 April 2017

Thanks for Hugh Evans’ hopes for making a lasting difference to ending world poverty (“I thought I could change the world”, April 15-16). I agree “the only way is financing for international developments”.

The challenge for a caring Australian government is to find the revenue to pay for development programs, not reduce it by company tax cuts.

One way is a (Tobin) tax of about 0.01 per cent on high-frequency foreign exchange transactions. The Reserve Bank calculated FOREX trades in April 2013 averaged $US182 billion each day. By contrast, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade reported Australia’s two-way trade in 2012 was $623.8 billion, or about four days’ FOREX trading.

This suggests over 90 per cent of these trades are speculative. Taxing financial speculators means extra revenue for child care, health care, aged care and Australia’s aid.

Our budget should not be balanced on the backs of the world’s poor. They share our world. We can share our wealth.

Peter Graves

Curtin (ACT)