Adaptarse o morir

MILÁN – En los mercados emergentes que crecen rápidamente, una mezcla de fuerzas económicas internas y políticas de apoyo sumadas a la naturaleza cambiante de la economía global es motor de un cambio sumamente veloz y de amplias consecuencias. Las estructuras económicas se transforman con tal velocidad que es casi imposible no advertirlo; pero los cambios son tan complejos que por momentos resultan desconcertantes.

En un contexto tan fluido es frecuente que se cometan errores, de los cuales probablemente el más perjudicial sea aferrarse demasiado tiempo a una estrategia de crecimiento (una combinación de ventajas comparativas y políticas de apoyo) que ha dado buenos resultados. En el sector transable de la economía, las ventajas comparativas se modifican todo el tiempo, dando lugar a cambios estructurales y a la destrucción creativa. Es frecuente que los países que salen de la pobreza para iniciar una “transición a niveles de ingresos medios” intenten resistirse a estos cambios, pero dicha resistencia es un freno al crecimiento y puede incluso detenerlo por completo.

Si bien el motor de estos cambios es el sector privado (tanto el interno como el externo), les cabe a las políticas gubernamentales y a los patrones de inversión del sector público un papel complementario y de apoyo fundamental. Y ambos elementos también deben poder adaptarse. El marco político que ha dado los mejores resultados a las principales economías emergentes es uno basado no solamente en la estabilidad macroeconómica y monetaria, sino también en la adaptación, guiada por una evaluación prospectiva (aunque inherentemente imperfecta) de los cambios estructurales micro y macroeconómicos que vendrán y de las medidas con que será necesario acompañarlos.

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