POLITICS & POLICY

Sweden – Tax havens: Panama Papers

The Swedish bank Nordea is listed, together with another 500 institutions, such as SBC, UBS and Société Générale in the “Panama papers”, a journalism collaboration carried out by The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ). Banks, but also politicians, have been caught creating offshore companies in order to evade taxes in their respective countries. As Sweden’s Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson points out, “the whole of the Swedish model is based on the fact that you accept and pay taxes”.

Source: The Local, 04/04/2016

EU – European Central Bank – Currency war

It appears that the undeclared global “currency war” has been interrupted. Due to financial markets’ volatility, the ECB’s new strategy focuses on easing credit and encouraging domestic demand. Nonetheless, analysts are doubting whether exchange rates will stop being manipulated by central banks to support their own economy, considering that influencing the exchange rate is an easy solution for policymakers to achieve their policy objectives.

Source: Luxemburger Wort, 03/04/2016

Malta – Pension Schemes: Work-related pension

Edward Scicluna, Malta’s Finance Minister, declared last week that the government is planning to introduce work-related pension schemes on a voluntary basis. Joe Farrugia, the director of the Malta Employers’ Association, declared that the MEA disagrees with this type of scheme, and believes that state pensions and private pension schemes should be strengthened. Farrugia also maintains that if the scheme is voluntary it could lead to a situation in which not all employers have an insurance scheme, inflicting a greater burden on their employees.

Source: Times of Malta, 03/04/2016


THE STATEMENT

“For decades, whenever the IMF “visited” a struggling country, it promoted “reforms” that led to the demolition of small businesses and the proletarisation of middle-class professionals. Abandoning the template in Greece would be to confess to the possibility that decades of anti-social programs imposed globally might have been inhuman and unnecessary”.

Yanis Varoufakis, former Greek Minister of Finance,

Source: Der Spiegel, 03/04/2016


NUMBERS

0.9%

The percentage by which economic sentiment has fallen in the Eurozone during the past month.

Source: Times of Malta, 03/04/2016

202

The number of migrants and refugees deported from Greece to Turkey as the recent EU-Turkey agreement is implemented.

Source: Ekathimerini, 04/04/2016


Photo Credits CC: TED Conference


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