Paul Lachine

Un nouveau plan de croissance pour l'Europe

BRUXELLES – L’austérité ne peut régler à elle seule la crise économique et financière de l’Europe. Il faut prêcher avec le même zèle pour la croissance et les emplois. Les dirigeants de l’Union européenne en sont maintenant convaincus : le redémarrage de la croissance en 2012 n'était-il pas l'item prioritaire du programme de la réunion du 30 janvier du Conseil européen. Toutefois, une grande question demeure. Comment y parvenir ?

Le besoin d’intervenir immédiatement est clair. L’économie de la zone euro s’est contractée les trois derniers mois de 2011 ; même celle de l’Allemagne. L’année qui vient est également de mauvais augure. La France fait du sur-place (comme la Grande-Bretagne). L’Italie et l’Espagne ont sombré dans une grave récession. Le marasme de la Grèce dure depuis cinq ans. Et le chômage de la zone euro atteint un niveau record, avec presque un jeune travailleur sur deux sans emploi en Espagne et en Grèce.

L’économie fait face à de redoutables vents contraires : austérité budgétaire, taux d’intérêt élevés pour les pays qui n’ont pas la cote AAA, assèchement du crédit bancaire, désendettement des ménages, affaiblissement de l'investissement privé et des exportations découlant du ralentissement mondial qui mine la demande.

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