Un plan Marshall árabe

OXFORD – La oleada de rebeliones que barrió el mundo árabe hace dos años resultó avivada por las reclamaciones de libertad, pan y justicia social, pero, aunque las revoluciones derrocaron a dictadores y transformaron sociedades, esos objetivos fundamentales siguen tan distantes como siempre. En realidad, los problemas económicos que afrontan los países de la “primavera árabe” han llegado a ser más apremiantes y representan una pesada carga para sus perspectivas económicas.

En Túnez y Egipto casi se ha duplicado el desempleo y en todo el mundo árabe la inversión extranjera directa ha quedado reducida a cero. Si bien se mantienen los ingresos por turismo, están reduciéndose y sigue habiendo considerables dificultades fiscales, pero la urgencia económica no se refleja en la reacción normativa, que ha sido tremendamente lenta o inexistente.

Este año, el déficit fiscal de Egipto, por ejemplo, superará el 11 por ciento del PIB, pero los dirigentes del país no han avanzado en las negociaciones sobre las condiciones que entrañará un préstamo del Fondo Monetario Internacional. El año pasado, tras la reducción por parte del Gobierno de las subvenciones a los combustibles, no se hicieron reformas suplementarias y, poco después de que el Presidente Mohamed Morsi anunciara un necesario aumento de los impuestos, se aplazó.

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