HLPF 2019 - World Solidarity particpates in revision of SDG 10

Uzziel Twagilimana, Continental Programme Co-ordinator at World Solidarity, took the floor during the HLPF Plenary on the revision of SDG 10 (Reducec Inequalities). During his intervention, Twagilama stressed that the greatest challenge of our times is a world dominated by a minority of haves against a majority of have-nots. Find his speech below.

As representative of workers and trade union major group, allow me to start saying that we dont have to be blind: "inequality is going from bad to worse" or in other terms, the greatest challenge of our times is a world dominated by a minority of haves, versus a majority of have-nots.

Tackling inequality lies at the heart of SDG 10 : it identifies key policies to tackle inequalities which are well known to all of us, and let me highlight three of them :

  • Universal social protection protection (for all):
    • Governments should develop, implement and monitor USP with total involvement of social partners (workers and employers representative organizations), in cooperation and with the support of CSOs.
    • There is also a consensus to sustainably finance SP in combinaison with contributory and non contributory mechanisms, in order to cover not only the needs of workers of formal economy but also informal economy (more than 80% in continent like Africa) and those in precarious jobs.
  • Need for to put in place in all countries, including LDC, a living wage for all, in order to allow all women, men, young to have a decent life : need of a shift from poverty wages named minimum wage to living wage. Isn’t it unfair that the higher salaries in some LDC is 500 times (25.000 dollars per month in some countries) higher than the poverty wage (50 dollars per month)?
  • To achieve this more inclusive society, there is a need to have really progressive fiscal policies : of course Government need income to implement the above policies.
    • Current fiscal policies put the burden on ordinary working people. This has to stop. Does anyone in this room how corporate taxes has decreased in the last 40 years ? Doses anywone know how much money is hiddent in tax havens depriving countries from essential ressources to invest in public policies.
    • Costing estimates from the ILO for extending social protection in 57 low and lower-middle income countries show that such extensions would amount to only 2.1 per cent of the combined GDP of these countries , or 0.23 per cent of global GDP. To put things in perspective, currently some 10% of the world’s GDP is held in tax havens

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