LONDON, July 22 Rich individuals and their
families have as much as $32 trillion of hidden financial assets
in offshore tax havens, representing up to $280 billion in lost
income tax revenues, according to research published on Sunday.
The study estimating the extent of global private financial
wealth held in offshore accounts - excluding non-financial
assets such as real estate, gold, yachts and racehorses - puts
the sum at between $21 and $32 trillion.
The research was carried out for pressure group Tax Justice
Network, which campaigns against tax havens, by James Henry,
former chief economist at consultants McKinsey & Co.
He used data from the World Bank, International Monetary
Fund, United Nations and central banks.
The report also highlights the impact on the balance sheets
of 139 developing countries of money held in tax havens by
private elites, putting wealth beyond the reach of local tax
The research estimates that since the 1970s, the richest
citizens of these 139 countries had amassed $7.3 to $9.3
trillion of "unrecorded offshore wealth" by 2010.
Private wealth held offshore represents "a huge black hole
in the world economy," Henry said in a statement.
(Reporting by Chris Vellacott)