Chine : croissance en berne

HONG KONG – Depuis plus de trente ans, le PIB de la Chine connaît une croissance moyenne annuelle de plus de 10%. Mais l’ancien Premier ministre Wen Jiabao a très justement décrit cette impressionnante performance comme « instable, déséquilibrée, mal coordonnée et insoutenable, » soulignant les nombreux coûts et défis économiques, sociaux et environnementaux qui l’ont accompagné. La Chine doit maintenant choisir entre le modèle de croissance du passé, fondé sur les exportations et l’investissement, et un nouvel ordre économique plus viable.

Le crédit bon marché et les incitations perverses – telles que les promotions accordées aux responsables officiels qui contribuent à la croissance du PIB – ont conduit à des investissements massifs mais redondants, qui ont ensuite entraîné une capacité excessive en matière de production et d’infrastructure. Ce modèle n’est pas seulement inefficace ; l’engagement des ressources du gouvernement pour soutenir l’investissement freine aussi le développement social du pays.

Compte tenu de cette situation, les dirigeants chinois ont décidé de cesser d’utiliser la croissance du PIB comme principal critère dans l’évaluation des performances des responsables officiels. En effet, le 12ème Plan quinquennal, qui court jusqu’en 2015, prétend faire basculer l’économie chinoise vers un nouveau modèle de croissance plus durable, fondé sur la qualité et l’innovation, et admet l’éventualité d’une baisse de la croissance du PIB à 7% dans le cadre de cette transition.

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