Jim Hilton discusses the principals of trickle-down economics and the business model of micro loans and their impact on the forest industry. (File Photo)

COLUMNS: Pros and cons of trickle down economics and micro-lending

Him Hilton discusses practical economic ways to help the little guy this week

Forest economics like most other industries is impacted by the global economy and the associated government policies intended to stimulate healthy communities.

Trickle-down economics, or “trickle-down theory,” states that tax breaks and benefits for corporations and the wealthy will trickle down to everyone else.

It argues for income and capital gains tax breaks or other financial benefits to large businesses, investors and entrepreneurs to stimulate economic growth.

While there is lots of information on “trickle down” there does not seem to be as much on helping those on the lower end of the scale. Some notable aid organizations are Foster Parents Plan, World Vision and the Salvation Army to name a few.

Some equally important but perhaps less well known are some banking organizations like Grameen Bank, Triodos Bank, Rabobank , Kiva and other micro-lending institutions.

READ MORE: Biomass IPPS should have special status

In his book, Banker to the Poor, Mohammed Yunis describes how the founding of “Grameen Bank” really started in 1976 with a loan of $27 out of his own pocket to 42 stool makers living in a tiny village.

The success of this first loan lead him to the simple principle “loan poor people money on terms that are suitable to them, teach a few sound financial principles , and they will help themselves.” The theory worked as Grameen bank has provided 3.8 billion dollars to 2.4 million families in rural Bangladesh in addition there are more than 250 institutions in nearly 100 countries that operate micro-credit programs. Even though the clients are very poor they have an excellent record of loan repayments.

Triodos Bank based in the Netherlands with branches in Belgium, Germany, United Kingdom and Spain claims to be a pioneer in ethical banking.

It finances companies which it thinks add cultural value and benefit both people and the environment. That includes companies in the fields of solar energy, organic farming or culture.

Rabobank another Dutch multinational banking and financial services company headquartered in Utrecht, Netherlands is a global leader in food and agriculture financing and sustainability-oriented banking.

Over its 40-odd-year history, the fund has grown from being a small charity to a professional development organization.

Kiva is an international nonprofit, founded in 2005 in San Francisco, with a mission to expand financial access to help underserved communities thrive. Students can pay for tuition, women can start businesses, farmers are able to invest in equipment and families can afford needed emergency care.

READ MORE: Who wants an increase in hydro rates?

Closer to home, a program in Ontario supports low-income women who are seeking to start their own business by providing financial literacy training, entrepreneurial mentoring and skills development and life skills support.

These skills will ensure women’s success in starting and growing their businesses.

Women who become business ready within these programs will be eligible to receive small loans (microloans) to start their businesses.

Through the Microlending over 800 low-income women will receive business readiness supports and financial skills training to help them on a successful path as entrepreneurs.

I think we all have the responsibility to research which approach has had the greatest impact on the majority of people on this planet.

This knowledge will help us in our investments as well as how we vote.


Do you have a comment about this story? email:
editor@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Jim Hilton is a professional agrologist and forester who has lived and worked in the Cariboo Chilcotin for the past 40 years. Now retired, Hilton still volunteers his skills with local community forests organizations.

Just Posted

Williams Lake speed skater qualifies for Canadian Western Speed Skating Championships

“I’m really proud of myself for achieving that.” - Leah Lauren

Amendments for Pinnacle Pellet focus of March 28 open house

“Our production will depend on the fibre profile in the region,” Loerke said.

One taken to hospital after motor vehicle incident on Mackenzie Avenue Tuesday

RCMP, CCSARS, EHS and Williams Lake Fire Department all respond

School board trustees put out the welcome mat for new superintendent

Ministry’s special advisor Mike McKay exits district as Chris van der Mark takes over

Cariboo Prince George MP slams Trudeau’s ‘coverup’ budget

Todd Doherty said the Conservatives plan to continue to oppose Mr. Trudeau’s coverup agenda

‘Full worm super moon’ to illuminate B.C. skies on first day of spring

Spring has sprung, a moon named in honour of thawing soil marks final super moon until 2020

40 records broken across B.C. as hot streak continues

Abbotsford hottest spot in Canada on Tuesday

B.C. wildfire prevention budget bulked up as dry spring unfolds

Night vision goggles tested for early detection effort

Vancouver driver ticketed twice within 6 minutes for same offence

The man was written up by two different officers for using an electronic device

B.C. teacher reprimanded after incident with Grade 11 student in school gym

Gregory Norman Brock was teaching at a high school in the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District

B.C. man ‘parks’ horse during liquor store pit stop

As long as animal wasn’t jaywalking, no problem, says Parksville official

Starbucks to test recyclable cups, redesign stores in B.C., U.S. cities

The company also said it plans to redesign its stores as it adapts to increasing mobile pick-up and delivery orders

In pre-election budget, Liberals boost infrastructure cash to cities, broadband

The budget document says the Liberals have approved more than 33,000 projects, worth about $19.9 billion in federal financing

‘That’s a load of crap’: Dog poop conspiracy spreads in White Rock

Allegation picked up steam through a Facebook page run by a city councillor

Most Read