Outside the Box: Biden wants to outlaw ‘junk’ fees for Americans, but his administration can also stop hidden charges that hurt poor countries

by | Feb 18, 2023 | Stock Market

In his State of the Union Address, President Joe Biden made a trenchant call to eliminate “junk” fees from businesses including airlines, banks, and credit card companies — “those hidden surcharges,” as Biden put it, that “too many businesses use to make you pay more.” Biden’s proposed Junk Fee Prevention Act is a valuable step toward addressing an issue that affects many Americans. But while Biden is going after exploitative, hidden fees domestically, there are other exploitative, hidden fees impacting the lives of hundreds of millions of people around the world that the U.S. has the ability to help end immediately.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) makes loans to developing countries with the ostensible goal of helping to prevent monetary crises and spur economic development. On top of the normal costs of these loans —  interest and service charges — the IMF controversially imposes additional fees on its most heavily indebted borrowers, fees that it calls surcharges. These surcharges siphon valuable resources away from where they’re needed most, such as pandemic and disaster response, climate preparedness, providing adequate nutrition and health care, and development, while punishing countries that are already struggling with major debt b …

Article Attribution | Read More at Article Source

Share This