Winnie Byanyima, executive director of Oxfam International, says the report reveals that the number of billionaires has almost doubled since the financial crisis. Photo: Oxfam

JOHANNESBURG – A report by Oxfam has shown that the inequality gap expanded last year with the World's billionaires growing their fortunes by $2.5 billion (R34bn) a year while the poor saw a further decline in fortunes.

The report shows that about 3.8 billion people who make up the poorest half of humanity saw their wealth decline by 11 percent. The report further found that women and girls are hardest hit by rising economic inequality.

Winnie Byanyima, executive director of Oxfam International, says the report reveals that the number of billionaires has almost doubled since the financial crisis, with a new billionaire, created every two days between 2017 and 2018.

“The size of your bank account should not dictate how many years your children spend in school, or how long you live – yet this is the reality in too many countries across the globe. While corporations and the super-rich enjoy low tax bills, millions of girls are denied a decent education and women are dying for lack of maternity care.”

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