One Year Later- Where's the Leadership? Groups Urge Minister Martin to "Walk the Talk" on Parliamentary Motion on the Tobin Tax
March 23, 2000 - Today non-governmental organizations join Parliamentarians in calling for Finance Minister Martin to "walk the talk" on a motion to tax financial speculators.
"One year ago today, the Canadian Parliament demonstrated world leadership when it passed motion M-239", said Pam Foster of the Halifax Initiative, "Since that time the federal government has made little effort to act on the will of Canadians."
Canada was the first Parliament in the world to pass a motion to "enact a tax on financial transactions in concert with the international community". The motion passed by a margin of 164 to 83 with the support of 131 Liberal members. This unprecedented action was viewed by Parliamentarians and non-governmental organizations as an important first step to control destabilising speculation in financial markets. The passage of the Canadian motion sparked global Parliamentary and citizen's movements in support of controls on speculative capital.
"Unless we take action against financial market volatility, the next crisis is only a matter of time." said Pierre Henrichon of ATTAC Québec, "The Tobin tax can help slow the rollercoaster on short-term capital markets, prevent the social devastation wrought by capital flight and generate up to $250 billion a year for social development. What are we waiting for?"
The Halifax Initiative and ATTAC Quebec along with prominent Canadians, academics from across Canada and leading non-governmental organizations representing over 2 million Canadians call on the Canadian government to act on a 4 point plan.
"We want a federal commitment to reporting on work to date, public hearings, targeted studies and an international conference to advance the global debate.on currency transactions taxes" said Lorne Nystrom, Member of Parliament who introduced the motion. "The work doesn't end when the votes are cast and the cameras turned off."
For more information contact:
Pam Foster Pierre Henrichon Halifax Initiative ATTAC Québec 613-789-4447 514-352-5539