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The combined wealth of the world’s 10 wealthiest men ‘could buy vaccines for all,’ report says

Oxfam’s report, the Inequality Virus, suggests the wealthiest people in the world could buy the vaccine for everyone, and do more

This Sept. 19, 2019 photo shows Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos arriving to a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington. Amazon announced Tuesday that CEO Jeff Bezos is leaving. AWS CEO Andy Jassy will replace him.
This Sept. 19, 2019, photo shows Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos arriving to a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Associated Press

The total wealth of the 10 richest men in the world could help pay for everyone to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, and keep people from falling into poverty, according to a new report from Oxfam, a global organization looking to end poverty and injustice.

  • Those 10 men include Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, Tesla founder Elon Musk and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

What’s going on?

Oxfam released a new report — which was titled “Inequality Virus” — that revealed the wealth of the 10 wealthiest men jumped by $540 billion.

  • This amount would be enough to prevent everyone in the world from falling into poverty because of the virus, and pay for a vaccine for all,” according to BBC News.

In fact, the report said the entire wealth of the 10 men was equal to the entire spending from all G20 governments on coronavirus recovery.

  • G20 governments include: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States and the European Union.

Key quote

  • “We think that this is ... an opportunity to do something radical about building back fairer to think about wealth taxes, to think about corporation taxes, to think about increasing the basic social floor for every citizen,” Danny Sriskandarajah, chief executive of Oxfam GB, told BBC News.

Changes already?

Bezos might be trying to help already. President Joe Biden received a letter from Amazon on his first day in office that said the company wanted to assist with the national rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to Reuters.

Dave Clark, the CEO of Amazon’s consumer business, sent the letter shortly after Biden’s inauguration into office.

  • “We are prepared to leverage our operations, IT, & communications capabilities and expertise to assist your administration’s vaccination efforts,” Clark wrote. “Our scale allows us to make a meaningful impact immediately in the fight against COVID-19, and we stand ready to assist you in this effort.”