Meeting with Representative Paul Ryan and Moving Forward

Network Interconnection

By Sister Simone Campbell, SSS

In the middle of May I had the opportunity to meet briefly with Congressman Paul Ryan, Chairman of the House Budget Committee. That meeting is still echoing in my mind as I try to find ways to bridge his understanding of the issues of poverty and what we know from our work in economically challenged communities.

I was struck that when I opened the meeting with my affirmation of his examining the issue of poverty he told me that some Democrats were angry with him for working on “their” issue. We both agreed that Pope Francis says that we all need to be concerned about those living in poverty and to have dialogue about the best way forward.

Congressman Ryan sees that the conservative movement has done good things in education with charter schools and vouchers. I said that it was good for those who could take advantage of them, but it left behind in public schools the most struggling and challenged students. This weakened the educational experience for those who did not get into a charter school. I tried to point out that any program has successes and some unintended negative consequences. I think he agreed. Continue reading Meeting with Representative Paul Ryan and Moving Forward

Zimbabwe: $770 Million in Potential Revenue Lost

News From Africa
In 2013 alone, price manipulations due to transfer pricing generated in excess of $1,6 billion in profits for diamond companies in the UAE, and represents a major deprivation for African treasuries which lost much needed tax revenues that could have funded public service, says report.

By Staff Writer
A report shows Zimbabwe lost about $770 million in potential revenue between 2008 and 2012 through undervaluation and transfer pricing of its gems from the Marange diamond fields.
Report by Partnership Africa Canada on illicit financial flows in the diamonds industry said the gems were being exported to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), mostly Dubai.
The report was on the agenda of the just-ended Kimberly Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) Intersessional meeting in Shanghai, China and was presented by PAC’s research director, Alan Martin.
The three-day meeting ended Thursday June 12.
Report says that, the UAE allegedly imported Zimbabwean diamonds cheaply but exported them at much higher prices.
It analyzed the statistics of exports submitted to the KPCS by Zimbabwe and the statistics of imports and exports by the UAE.
Zimbabwe Environmental Law Society participates in the KPCS meetings as the coordinator of the KPCS Civil Society Coalition.
“Perhaps one of the country’s worst affected by transfer pricing and under-valuation of diamonds in is Zimbabwe, which lost an estimated $770 million in taxable revenues on exports to UAE between 2008 and 2012 due to an average 50% undervaluation of its diamonds, ” said Martin. Continue reading Zimbabwe: $770 Million in Potential Revenue Lost