Publication Type: 
Research on the EITI
Published Date: 
December, 2015

Financial Flows and Tax Havens Combining to Limit the Lives of Billions of People

Global Financial Integrity (GFI), the Centre for Applied Research at the Norwegian School of Economics and a team of global experts have released a study showing that since 1980 developing countries lost US$16.3 trillion dollars through broad leakages in the balance of payments, trade misinvoicing, and recorded financial transfers. These resources represent immense social costs that have been borne by the citizens of developing countries around the globe. Funding for the report was provided by the Research Council of Norway, and research assistance was provided by economists in Brazil, India, and Nigeria.

Titled “Financial Flows and Tax Havens: Combining to Limit the Lives of Billions of People,” the report demonstrates that developing countries have effectively served as net-creditors to the rest of the world with tax havens playing a major role in the flight of unrecorded capital. For example, in 2011 tax haven holdings of total developing country wealth were valued at US$4.4 trillion, which exacerbated inequality and undermined good governance and economic growth.