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Back | Programme Area: Social Policy and Development

Inequality and The 1%: Is a Transformative Fiscal Policy Possible?

Date: 10 Jul 2019

Inequality and The 1%: Is a Transformative Fiscal Policy Possible?
Parallel event during the 2019 High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development

This event will allow participants to gain a better understanding of the key drivers and consequences of inequitable and ineffective tax systems, from global to local levels. They will be exposed to new empirical evidence and concrete experiences of different actors and countries that have implemented and funded equality-enhancing policies (policies to combat both vertical and horizontal inequality), and will come away with insights into the political strategies that can be mobilized to move towards a new fiscal compact for sustainable development.

Inequalities are one of today’s greatest challenges, obstructing poverty reduction and sustainable development. Elite capture of economic and political power catalyses inequalities, and reinforces them -- undermining social, environmental and economic sustainability, and fuelling poverty, insecurity, crime and xenophobia.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development seeks to overcome inequalities, “leaving no one behind”. How can the transformative change envisioned in the 2030 Agenda take place?

Fiscal policy, an equality-enhancing instrument

In keeping with the mandate of the HPLF to provide guidance and recommendations on implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the panellists at this event will share knowledge and experience on the use of equitable and sustainable taxation policies to reduce inequalities, and explore strategies for building the agency and overcoming the political barriers to implementation of tax reforms that are equality-enhancing and contribute to sustainable development.

Tax policy and tax governance have the potential to raise necessary revenues for public spending which tackles vertical and horizontal inequalities, and to stem market incentives for accumulation of income and wealth at the top, while forging a credible fiscal compact between citizens and the state. At this Side Event, representatives from civil society organizations, member states and UN organizations, as well as researchers, will discuss:
  • recent economic and political factors that have shaped fiscal space
  • the role of fiscal policies in reducing inequalities
  • how to reform tax policies and tax governance to enhance equality, from national to global levels
  • drivers of progressive tax systems
  • how to build alliances and coalitions to promote tax reforms for inclusive and sustainable development

Join us for the whole morning, or as your schedule permits:
  • Breakfast Panel Discussion (8:00-9:45): Setting the Stage for Global-Level Action
  • Roundtable (10:00 - 11:45): Coordinating Global and National Action

The full programme will be released soon.