The coronavirus pandemic severely affected the finances of normal people across the globe – but the world’s billionaires managed to cash in on one of the worst crises in recent memory. According to a new report by Oxfam, the world’s richest men have more than doubled their collective wealth since March 2020, and more people are living in poverty now than at the start of the pandemic.
The report also claimed low incomes contributed to the deaths of 21,000 people each day.
It reported that access to healthcare, hunger, gender-based violence and climate breakdown contributed to one death every four seconds.
The report read: “Millions of people would still be alive today if they had had a vaccine — but they are dead, denied a chance while big pharmaceutical corporations continue to hold monopoly control of these technologies.
“These present-day divides are directly linked to historical legacies of racism, including slavery and colonialism.”
READ MORE: NFTs ‘will be everywhere’ in years to come
The report called for the vaccine patents to be made public so they can be more widely replicated across the world.
While the poor became poorer, the report calculated that 252 men have more wealth than all one billion women and girls in Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean combined.
The 10 richest men in the world own more than the least affluent 3.1 billion people.
Danny Sriskandarajah, Oxfam GB’s chief executive, said: ”This year, what’s happening is off the scale.
“There’s been a new billionaire created almost every day during this pandemic, meanwhile 99 percent of the world’s population are worse off because of lockdowns, lower international trade, less international tourism, and as a result of that, 160 million more people have been pushed into poverty.
“Something is deeply flawed with our economic system.”
He continued: “Even during a global crisis our unfair economic systems manage to deliver eye-watering windfalls for the wealthiest but fail to protect the poorest.”
‘Be pension savvy’: ‘Most important’ tip for British expats [INSIGHT]
Martin Lewis tips for ‘super cheap’ Covid travel insurance [EXPLAINER]
Sergey Brin – Co-founder and board member of Alphabet – $126 billion
Mark Zuckerberg – Co-founder, CEO and Chair of Meta (formerly Facebook) – $121 billion
Steve Ballmer – Owner of Los Angeles Clippers – $119 billion
Larry Ellison – Co-founder, CTO and Chair of Oracle – $109 billion
Warren Buffet – CEO of Berkshire Hathaway – $104 billion
While collectively their wealth grew from $700 billion to $1.5 trillion, there is significant variation between them.
Elon Musk’s fortune grew by more than 1,000 percent, while Bill Gates’ rose by 30 percent.