Tobin Tax

FAQs - Financing for Development

Monthly Issue Update - January 31, 2006

World Bank Suspends Loans to Chad for Oil Pipeline
On January 12, in a rarely seen move, the World Bank cut off funding to the Chad-Cameroon Petroleum Development and Pipeline Project pipeline. The $4.2 billion project entailed the development of the southern Chadian oil fields at Doba and the construction of a 1,070 km pipeline that begins in Chad, crosses through Cameroon, and leads to an offshore oil-loading facility on Cameroon's Atlantic coast. To address concerns about weak governance, poor budget-management experience, and setting up a major project in a recently war-torn country, the Bank had attached strict conditions to the loan. Hailed by the Bank as a pioneering breakthrough, Chad was obliged to account for its estimated $1.8 billion in oil royalties through a transparent revenue management system. As a result, in 1998 the Chadian government adopted the Oil Revenues Management Act requiring more than 80 percent of the accrued revenues to be allocated to education, health, rural development, infrastructure, environment and water, with a 10 percent long-term savings account fund to benefit future generations. But since that time, the Chadian government made fundamental changes to the law to allow for greater spending flexibility, and failed to include the Bank in the revisions. The Bank saw this change as unacceptable, and elected to suspend the $124 million loan.

Letter #1 from Minister M. Aileen Caroll - July 8, 2005.

Recieved July 8, 2005

Mr. John Mihevc
Halifax Initiative Coalition
104 - 153 Chapel Street
Ottawa, Ontario KIN 1H5

Dear Mr. Mihevc:

As Minister of International Cooperation, I am pleased to respond to your letter to the Prime Minister, concerning Canada's international assistance efforts.

Financial taxes are complex matters, especially when they are meant to generate additional revenues for development and not, like past proposals such as the Tobin tax, to reduce market volatility. This is why my colleague, the Honourable Ralph E. Goodale, Minister of Finance, and I requested, at the World Bank and International Monetary Fund meetings last October, that their staff conduct technical studies on the potential impact of various innovative financing proposals.

March 2002 : Parliamentary Update on the Tobin Tax

Support for the Tobin Tax Growing Around the World
With the exception of Canada, which is backpeddling on its commitment to Tobin tax adoption in the motion passed on March 23, 1999, and the US, which is ideologically opposed to any control over “free” markets, the debate on the need for and feasibility of currency controls is growing globally. Below are some recent milestones.

Conference: "Currency Transactions Taxes: From Feasibility to Implementation", Vancouver, October 4 - 6, 2001

Conference Summary
The citizens-led anti-globalization movement is in its ascendancy, yet risks its credibility if it is unable to articulate an agenda of alternatives to the current economic paradigm. At NGO conferences around the world over the last two years, debate has expanded beyond a critique of the existing economic paradigm and systems to the articulation of the "world we want". One critical component of an emerging vision of global equity and justice, supported by a growing number of non-governmental organizations, unions, Parliamentarians and academics around the world, is the currency transactions tax or CTT.

Speech to the New Humanity International NGO Conference

“A Global Agreement towards a United World”, June 1 – 3, 2001, Genoa, Italy

Experience with Currency Transactions (Tobin) Taxes – Debunking the Myths and Building Political Support

by Robin Round, Policy Analyst

The world of finance has become a global gambling casino, where investors seeking quick profits bet huge sums around the clock. Big banks and investment firms are the players, profiting from the minute-to-minute, hourly or daily fluctuations in prices on bond and currency markets around the world. These players are not investing in the `real economy', which generates jobs and produces goods and services, they are investing in the ‘paper economy’ in which money becomes a commodity rather than a means of exchange.

Press Release : Thursday, March 22, 2001

Regulate or devastate? That is the question
March 22, 2001 - Today non-governmental organizations call on Finance Minister Martin to act immediately to control financial market behavior.
“With stock markets crashing around us, the need to control the rollercoaster of international finance has never been more urgent”, said Gord Walker of Halifax Initiative member organization RESULTS Canada, "Parliamentarians voted overwhelmingly to do so two years ago, but the federal government has dropped the ball."


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