El círculo vicioso del crecimiento chino

LONDRES – La mayoría de los economistas están preocupados por la economía china, y por diferentes motivos: falta de consumo y grandes superávit externos, exceso de capacidad industrial, deterioro del medio ambiente, intervenciones del gobierno (por ejemplo, control de capitales y represión financiera). Pero muchos no se dan cuenta de que sólo son síntomas de un único problema básico: las distorsiones del modelo de crecimiento de China.

Hasta cierto punto, el modelo es una creación política, resultado de una arraigada preferencia por la construcción y las manufacturas como motores principales del desarrollo económico. Predilección que trae reminiscencias del Gran Salto Adelante de los cincuenta, cuando la gente se puso a fundir chatarra para cumplir unas metas de producción de acero exageradamente optimistas y propiciar el sueño de Mao de una veloz industrialización.

Hoy, la propensión de China hacia la producción industrial se manifiesta en proyectos fabriles y de infraestructura a gran escala, alentados por subsidios públicos directos e indirectos. Como este enfoque estimula la inversión y genera recaudación impositiva para los gobiernos locales, tiene un impacto positivo más inmediato en el PIB que tratar de desarrollar el sector servicios.

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