By Marica Micallef
According to an International Labour Organization assessment, workers worldwide collectively lost $3.7 trillion in earnings during the coronavirus epidemic, an 8.3% reduction (ILO). The biggest income fall, 10.3%, was experienced by American employees.
8.8% of working hours were lost globally, and 114 million individuals lost their jobs, according to the report, which referred to this as a “unprecedented” amount.
When it comes to the pandemic’s impact on employment, women have been severely hit. The US lost 140,000 jobs in December, and all of them were held by women, meaning that they dropped out of the labour market.
According to Taylor Borden of Insider, in September 2020, one million married women lost their employment. These losses occurred during the back-to-school season, a time when many American mothers who were employed may have left their jobs to care for kids who either didn’t have daycare or were attending school virtually.
But this was not the case with the billionaires! According to a recent Oxfam report, entitled “The Inequality Virus”, the world’s billionaires didn’t simply make up for their losses due to the coronavirus; their increased wealth as a whole could cover the cost of vaccinations for everyone in the globe and keep them out of poverty. Millions of British who are being pushed into poverty because of household energy bills which are set to soar to more than £3,300 by winter, will be more than happy to have this wealth shared with them.
The report said: “The increase in the wealth of the 10 richest billionaires since the crisis began is more than enough to prevent anyone on Earth from falling into poverty because of the virus and to pay for a COVID-19 vaccine for all.”
Between March 18 and December 31, 2020, billionaires’ wealth increased by $3.9 trillion worldwide. Like millions of other people around the world, billionaires experienced some initial losses at the beginning of the epidemic; however, according to the research, they had fully recovered by November.
According to the analysis, between 200 million and 500 million individuals may have entered poverty in 2020; rehabilitation for those at the bottom could take up to ten years. For example, in recent months, 8 million Americans have fallen into poverty. American billionaires had seen their net worths grow to $4 trillion throughout the pandemic; at the time, the top 10 richest billionaires were worth over $1 trillion. Worldwide, Oxfam reports that the collective worth of billionaires is $11.95 trillion — “which is equivalent to what G20 governments have spent in response to the pandemic.”
The International Monetary Fund said governments should consider taxing their wealthiest residents for much-needed revenue. This would be a much fairer system. What about if these billionaires share their trillions with the citizens? They would surely erase poverty if they did.
The Oxfam report said that “The coronavirus crisis must mark a turning point in the taxation of the richest individuals and big corporations. “We must look back on this crisis as the moment when we finally started to tax the rich fairly once more — the moment that the race to the bottom ended and the race to the top began.”
Among these wealthy, we also find that the CEOs of the covid-19 vaccine manufacturers received millions in remuneration during Covid-19.
The Financial Times reported that the enormous economic success of the mRNA Covid vaccines created by their pharmaceutical companies (thanks to those who decided to comply and take the vaccine) is reflected in the fact that the chief executives of Pfizer, BioNTech, and Moderna have each received more than $100 million in remuneration during the epidemic.
Because of share price improvements brought up by investor enthusiasm for businesses developing Covid-19 vaccines and treatments, Albert Bourla of Pfizer, Ugur Sahin of BioNTech, and Stéphane Bancel of Moderna have also seen their paper wealth expand over the previous two years.
Bancel of Moderna and Sahin of BioNTech have achieved paper billionaire status because of their respective 7.8% and 17.1% stakes in the businesses, which are valued at approximately $5.4 billion and $7.8 billion, respectively. The largest salary increase during the epidemic went to Pfizer CEO Bourla. He received $45.3 million in 2020–2021 vs $27.7 million in 2018–2019.
Of course, this thanks to their kindness to save humanity from Covid! It is clear that the pandemic was the biggest bank daylight robbery in history.