Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty Images

الخروج البريطاني بالمقلوب

لندن ــ يبدو أن الواقع الاقتصادي بدأ يلحق بركب الآمال الزائفة التي حَدَت العديد من البريطانيين. فقبل عام واحد، عندما صوتت أغلبية ضئيلة لصالح انسحاب المملكة المتحدة من الاتحاد الأوروبي، صدق الناخبون وعود الصحافة الشعبية ووعود الساسة الذين دعموا حملة الخروج بأن خروج بريطانيا لن ينتقص من مستويات معيشتهم. والواقع أنهم في غضون العام تمكنوا من الحفاظ على تلك المستويات من خلال زيادة ديون الأسر.

وقد نجح هذا لبعض الوقت، لأن الزيادة في استهلاك الأسر حفزت الاقتصاد. لكن لحظة الحقيقة بالنسبة لاقتصاد المملكة المتحدة تقترب بسرعة. وكما تُظهِر أحدث الأرقام التي نشرها بنك إنجلترا، فإن نمو الأجور في بريطانيا عاجز من مواكبة التضخم، ولهذا بدأت الدخول الحقيقية تنخفض.

ومع استمرار هذا الاتجاه في الأشهر المقبلة، سوف تدرك الأسر قريبا أن مستويات معيشتها آخذة في الانخفاض، وأنها مضطرة إلى تعديل عاداتها في الإنفاق. وسوف تزداد الأمور سوءا عندما تدرك الأسر أيضا أنها أصبحت مثقلة بالديون وأنها لابد أن تعمل على تقليص مديونياتها، وهذا يعني بالتالي المزيد من خفض الاستهلاك الأسري الذي كان يدعم الاقتصاد.

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