Un FMI bien-aimé?

CAMBRIDGE – La crise a changé bien des choses pour le Fonds monétaire international. Cette institution importante mais mal-aimée, emblématique de ces dispositifs créés après-guerre pour veiller sur l’économie mondiale, semblait, il n’y a encore que quelques mois, vouée à l’insignifiance.

Le Fonds était depuis longtemps devenu le souffre-douleur de la gauche, comme de la droite. La première le trouvait trop sourcilleux sur les questions budgétaires et trop arc-bouté sur l’orthodoxie économique, la seconde lui reprochait sa figure de sauveur des nations endettées. Les pays en développement le consultaient à contrecœur, tandis que les pays les plus avancés l’ignoraient, n’ayant pas d’argent à lui demander. Ses réserves, rendues dérisoires par la profusion des capitaux privés d’aujourd’hui, en faisaient, semble-t-il, un anachronisme.

Et, quand certains des plus grands débiteurs du FMI (le Brésil et l’Argentine) ont commencé, il y a quelques années, à solder leurs dettes, sans nouveaux emprunteurs à l’horizon, on pouvait se dire qu’il mettait le deuxième pied dans la tombe. Il avait perdu sa raison d’être et, en prime, sa source de revenus semblait se tarir. Dégraissant ses budgets, se mettant à réduire ses effectifs, il se voyait confier de nouvelles responsabilités, dont la surveillance des “manipulations monétaires,” mais ses débats s’avéraient pour la plupart coupés de la réalité.

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