Coins grouped in a circle in golden atmosphere with clouds.

Que la luz del sol entre en los paraísos fiscales

BERKELEY – Los paraísos fiscales están concebidos para ser secretos y opacos. Toda la razón de su existencia es la de ocultar la riqueza escondida en ellos y un nuevo libro de Gabriel Zucman, TheHidden Wealth of Nations: The Scourge of Tax Havens (“La riqueza oculta de las naciones. El azote de los paraísos fiscales”), revela, como nunca, la magnitud de su papel en la economía mundial.

Zucman examina las discrepancias en las cuentas internacionales para ofrecer las cifras más precisas y fiables que probablemente podamos obtener sobre la cantidad de dinero almacenado en los paraísos fiscales. Calcula que el ocho por ciento de la riqueza financiera del mundo –unos 7.600 billones de dólares- está oculta en lugares como Suiza, las islas Bermudas, las islas Caimán, Singapur y Luxemburgo. Representa más riqueza que la poseída por la mitad más pobre de los 7.400 millones de personas del mundo.

Esa cifra tiene consecuencias importantes, pues representa un dinero que debería estar en la base imponible tributaria. Si los países ricos de Europa y de Norteamérica no pueden gravar eficazmente a los ricos, tienen pocas posibilidades de preservar la democracia social y contrarrestar el pronunciado aumento de la desigualdad que ha afectado recientemente a sus economías. Asimismo, las economías en ascenso abrigan pocas esperanzas de crear sistemas tributarios progresivos, si no pueden encontrar la riqueza de sus plutócratas.

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