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Contributor / President of the Finance Foundation
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Inequality is THE PROBLEM to resolve says Johann Rupert, Richemont, billionaire, owner.

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05/18/2017 | 06:44am CEST


Inequality is the basic, most important, even crucial problem for Western democracies. A universal basic income is a must for all citizens who cope with economic upheavals.

These words have not been pronounced by a left wing revolution minded politician, but by the CEO, majority owner and founder of Richemont. Ηis name is Johann Rupert.

Mr Rupert announced the reorganisation of his firm, the arrival of his son etc., but the most important action philosophy he expressed is the one above. Fight against inequality. His group includes such global brands, as Cartier and Mont Blanc. He believes that huge changes in the industrial process, rise of Artificial Intelligence will leave many, many without a job. 

In his view, as we develop this new civilisation in which machines, called IT or robots or whatever you want, are the No 1 danger for jobs and individuals and family prosperity. Much more so, than an upturn of the economic trend or joblessness. The latter can be changed. Economic and financial situations  vary. Central banks can influence those, change them.

But, if our civilisation goes into automatic things, if it gets services and products from machines, which will very quickly maintain themselves without us, it may become a catastrophy. 

And to hear that from Mr Rupert, billionaire, chief executive, is more important than to hear it from a trade union man. 

So, we better listen. 



Michel Gabrysiak
© The Finance Foundation 2017
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