News / Americas

Clinton Hits Tax Evasion in Latin America

US Secretary Hillary Clinton meeting at the Palacio de Carondelet in Quito with Ecuador's President Rafael Correa, 08 Jun 2010
US Secretary Hillary Clinton meeting at the Palacio de Carondelet in Quito with Ecuador's President Rafael Correa, 08 Jun 2010
TEXT SIZE - +

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton continued a four-nation Latin America and Caribbean trip Tuesday, meeting in Quito with Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa. In a speech in Quito, Clinton criticized what she said was widespread tax evasion in Latin America - saying governments are not collecting enough money to provide quality education and services.

Previous suggestions by the Secretary that Latin American states should raise taxes on the wealthy have drawn criticism from American conservatives who see lower taxes in the United States as conducive to growth.

But she emphasized that theme in her policy address in Quito, saying it is a simple fact that in many Latin American countries, the wealthy don't pay their fair share.

"We cannot mince words about this," said Hillary Clinton. "Levels of tax evasion are unacceptably high - as much or more than 50 percent in some of this region's economies when it comes to personal income tax. Now, why does it matter?  It matters because without a sufficient tax base, there are simply not enough revenues for the public sector to offer the services and infrastructure that foster social mobility and competitive economies - roads and power plants, airports,  health systems and schools."

Clinton said that acknowledging tax unfairness and cheating is not class warfare, but a matter of recognizing that a winner takes all approach to economic policy is short-sighted and obsolete.

She said everyone benefits when economic opportunity is broad based:

"More inclusive growth will make our entire economies stronger and more competitive over the long run, which will benefit us all," she said. "We simply cannot support policies that reduce poverty and spread prosperity if the wealthiest among us are not doing our part."

Clinton said that with trade and growth in Latin America relatively high and regional conflicts rare, it is a moment of opportunity for the Americas to consolidate democracy and take off economically.

Clinton had three hours of meetings here with Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa, a left-leaning populist who angered the Bush administration by refusing to extend an accord allowing U.S. drug surveillance flights from Ecuador's Manta airbase.

Mr. Correa has since been critical of the subsequent accord giving U.S. forces access to several Colombian bases. At a joint press event with Mr. Correa, Clinton promised U.S. transparency in its Colombian operations aimed she said at helping that country's battle against drug gangs and FARC guerrillas.

"The United States has been proud to help Colombia," said Clinton. "But clearly we respect the territorial integrity of all countries in the region. And wee are certainly committed to sharing information and working in a mutually-beneficial way with the neighbors of Colombia."

The Ecuadoran president, an ally of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez welcomed the Clinton assurances while saying regional concerns remain about the bases.

He said he and his government are not anti-American but pro social-justice and said his happiest years those spent at a U.S. university.

He endorsed Clinton's emphasis on tax evasion, saying when he has proposed raising taxes on wealthy Ecuadorans, it is attacked as communist rhetoric.

You May Like

Photogallery Pope's Easter Prayer: Peace in Ukraine, Syria

Pontiff also calls for end to terrorist acts in Nigeria, violence in Iraq, and success in peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians More

Abdullah Holds Lead in Afghan Presidential Election

Country's Election Commission says that with half of the ballots counted, former FM remains in the lead with 44 percent of the vote More

Russia-Ukraine Crisis Could Trigger Cyber War

As tensions between Kyiv and Moscow escalate, so too has frequency of online attacks targeting government, news and financial sites More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid

More Americas News

Venezuelan Protesters Burn Leaders in Effigy

Hundreds take to streets of Caracas Easter Sunday demanding ‘resurrection of democracy; President Maduro’s image among those burnt
More

Photogallery Pope's Easter Prayer: Peace in Ukraine, Syria

Pontiff also calls for end to terrorist acts in Nigeria, violence in Iraq, and success in peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians
More

Audit Finds US Housing Aid Program in Haiti Falls Short

Results show post-earthquake USAID program has delivered only a quarter of planned number of homes at nearly twice the budgeted cost
More

Mourning, Memories in Garcia Marquez's Languid Hometown

Nobel Prize-winning author's early years in Aracataca inspired characters, tales for major novel
More

Powerful Earthquake Rattles Mexico

US Geological Survey says quake measuring 7.5 on Richter scale, was centered in the western state of Guerrero, north of Acapulco beach resort
More

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support
More