10% of Belgians own half the country's wealth

The charity Oxfam is today highlighting the fact that the world's eight richest men nearly own the same amount of wealth as the poorest half of the world's population. The organisation claims that this means that the gap between rich and poor has never been so great. Oxfam warns that this is leading to growing inequality and instability.

In Belgium the richest 10% of the population appear to own half the country's wealth. The poorest half of the population own 8.8% of Belgium's riches. Inequality in Belgium is less pronounced than in other Eurozone states. Research commissioned by the European Central Bank showed that the richest 10% of EU citizens own 51.2% of the bloc's wealth. Across the globe the richest 1% of the population owns more than all the others put together.

Belgium's richest 1 million people own 1,043 billion euros. The poorest half of the population possesses 208 billion. Oxfam describes the figures as "alarming". With 6.2 billion euros Albert Frère, the richest Belgian, owns more than Belgium's 2 million poorest people.

Oxfam’s report comes as the World Economic Forum is about to start in Davos, Switzerland.