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Scotland backs the Robin Hood Tax. People around the world are saying enough is enough

Posted by Jamie Livingstone Head of Oxfam Scotland

15th Nov 2011

The recent economic crisis was triggered by the financial sector but has inflicted immense costs and hardships on ordinary citizens in both the developed and developing world.

Oxfam believes it's time for those who caused the crisis to make a greater contribution towards safeguarding livelihoods and lives both at home and abroad.

One solution is a Robin Hood Tax - a simple concept which would have an enormous impact. Otherwise known as a Financial Transactions Tax (FTT), it would largely affect high-frequency casino-style trading on shares, bonds, foreign exchange and derivatives rather than things like pensions and savings.

It is therefore the fairest available tool to generate the extra funds needed to tackle global poverty, climate change and to curb cuts to crucial public services. Estimates suggest it could raise globally as much as £250 billion a year. Momentum behind this idea has continued to grow and, while there was limited progress at the G20 in Cannes, this is far from the end.

France, Germany, Argentina, South Africa and Brazil - as well as by an array of high profile figures from the Pope to the Archbishop of Canterbury and Jeff Sachs - all back it.

A report to the G20 by Microsoft founder Bill Gates made it clear the tax is both feasible and desirable. It's therefore vital we keep up the pressure ahead of the UN climate talks in Durban in South Africa next month.

Oxfam believes some of the money raised from a Robin Hood Tax should be used to tackle climate change and to help those already being affected by it. Yet opposition still exists - including from the UK. David Cameron's Government continues to side with the interests of a privileged few in the financial sector rather than with the 99% who are suffering the effects of the economic crisis.

Indeed the UK has fast become one of the key blockers in the international process. That's why it's so important for Scotland's voice to be heard. By demonstrating our support we can show that Mr Cameron is even isolated within the UK. It's time to stand up and be counted; it's time for the Robin Hood Tax.

Sign the petition and back the Robin Hood Tax

We hope the Robin Hood Tax will be debated in the Scottish Parliament soon so please help us build the pressure on MSPs to show their support. Once you've signed up share this link with friends and family as well as your local businesses, civic organisations and of course politicians -

A Robin Hood Tax is achievable, with your help.

Blog post written by Jamie Livingstone

Head of Oxfam Scotland

More by Jamie Livingstone