Vatican - Pope Francis addressed a small group of Finance Ministers, the head of the IMF and noted economists urging the creation of new global debt and tax policies that can reduce inequality and end poverty.
"Pope Francis asserts that to live in a world with so much wealth, when there is so much poverty, is sinful," stated Eric LeCompte who leads the religious development group Jubilee USA. LeCompte serves on United Nations finance expert groups. "Inequality and extreme poverty are the results of current debt and tax policies that concentrate wealth in too few hands."
The high-level seminar, New Forms of Solidarity Towards fraternal Inclusion, Integration and Innovation Seminar, was organized by the Papal Academy of Social Sciences and held in the historic Casina Pio IV.
During the event, Kristalina Georgieva who heads the IMF, encouraged curbing tax avoidance and evasion. Nobel Laureate, Joseph Stiglitz and Argentine Minister of Economy, Martin Guzman related the deep need for a global bankruptcy process to prevent financial and debt crises.
"It was encouraging to see growing calls for new mechanisms that can reduce debt, austerity policies and inequality," noted LeCompte who advises Catholic Church officials on poverty, debt and tax policies. "If we had a bankruptcy process in place, we might have avoided the 2008 financial crisis and countries like Argentina probably wouldn't be dealing with a debt crisis."