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La alarma del Brexit

LONDRES – Como el entusiasta europeísta que soy, el resultado del referendo británico sobre su calidad de miembro de la Unión Europea me horrorizó. Casi con seguridad hará que abandonemos la UE. De todos modos, por años había albergado el temor de que la inmigración de gran escala al Reino Unido produjera una respuesta populista nociva.

Ahora las elites globales tienen que aprender de la crucial lección del “Brexit” y actuar en consecuencia. Contrariamente a las suposiciones simplistas, la globalización del capital, el comercio y los flujos migratorios no es “beneficiosa para todos”. Si no abordamos sus efectos adversos, puede que el Brexit no sea la última consecuencia, ni la peor.

La inmigración neta a Inglaterra era cercana a cero en los años 90. Comenzó a aumentar más entrada esa década y creció con rapidez después de que ocho países ex comunistas se unieran a la UE en 1994, cuando (a diferencia de, por ejemplo, Francia o Alemania) el país prefirió no usar su derecho de imponer una demora de siete años antes de permitir la libre circulación de personas procedentes de los nuevos estados miembro. El año pasado la inmigración neta fue de 333.000 y la población total creció en cerca de 500.000 personas. Los pronósticos creíbles sugieren que la población británica, que ahora asciende a 64 millones, podría superar los 80 millones hacia mediados de siglo.

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