Paul Lachine

Ajuste chino

BARÉIN.– Quienes observan a China están esperando, desean saber si los chinos han logrado implementar un aterrizaje suave, enfriando una economía recalentada y logrando una tasa de crecimiento más sostenible, o si el dragón asiático se estrellará como antes lo han hecho algunos de sus vecinos. Pero algunos, especialmente los políticos estadounidenses en este año de elecciones presidenciales, se centran únicamente en un tema: la balanza comercial china.

Es cierto, poco tiempo atrás el yuan estaba fuertemente subvaluado y los superávits comerciales chinos eran muy grandes. Esa situación está cambiando. Las fuerzas de ajuste están actuando sobre la economía china, por lo que las percepciones extranjeras también necesitan ajustarse.

El superávit comercial chino alcanzó su máximo de 300 mil millones de dólares en 2008, desde entonces no ha hecho más que disminuir. (De hecho, los datos oficiales mostraron un déficit de 31 mil millones en febrero, el mayor desde 1998.) Lo que ha sucedido es claro. Desde que China se reincorporó a la economía global hace tres décadas, sus socios comerciales han estado quitándoles de las manos sus exportaciones de manufacturas, ya que los bajos salarios chinos las hacían súpercompetitivas. Pero, en los últimos años, los precios relativos se han ajustado.

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