11 February 2014, The Tablet

Vatican's social justice head calls for radical overhaul of world's financial systems

Six years after the financial crash that led to the global recession, inequality has only deepened and a vision for a new financial regime has yet to be discovered. So said Cardinal Peter Turkson, head of the Vatican's Council for Justice and Peace, at a lecture at the London School of Economics on 6 February. In it he called for a "inclusive and sustainable" global economy in which rich and poor nations alike are integrated and work together on issues from trade to education to health. He also reiterated his office's controversial 2011 call for a global authority to regulate the global economy, the introduction of a tax on financial transactions and clearer delineation between investment and high street banks. 

He charged: "We must set aside familiar nostrums about invisible hands and unseen forces that largely leave out the vast majority, ignore the natural environment, and support the status quo." Quoting Pope Francis, he nonetheless added: “A crisis can become a time of purification and a time to rethink our socio-economic models and of a certain understanding of progress that fed illusions, in order to recover what is most fully human.”

Read his lecture here.

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