Surmonter la montagne de dettes de l’Europe

BERLIN – Le Fonds monétaire international (FMI) estime que le coût net du soutien dispensé au secteur financier par les pays du G20 en 2009 à la suite de la crise s’élève à 1,7 pour cent du PIB mondial (soit 905 milliards de dollars), tandis que les paquets fiscaux se sont élevés à 2 pour cent du PIB mondial en 2009 et 2010. À l’exception du Luxembourg et de la Finlande, tous les pays de la zone euro ont accusé des déficits publics de plus de 3 pour cent de leur PIB en 2009, tandis que la Grèce, l’Espagne et l’Irlande devaient faire face à des déficits publics de plus de 10 pour cent de leur PIB. Au cours d’une seule année, la dette publique de l’ensemble des pays de la zone euro a crû de presque 10 points de pourcentage (pour atteindre 78,7 pour cent du PIB en 2009, comparé à 69,3 pour cent en 2008).

Pour ce qui est de l’Allemagne, le budget fédéral pour 2010 affichait un déficit record de plus de 50 milliards d’euros. La dette publique dépassera les 1,7 mille milliards d’euros, soit près de 80 pour cent du PIB. Le remboursement des intérêts de la dette, qui consomme plus de 10 pour cent du budget fédéral allemand, ira croissant parallèlement à un endettement toujours plus élevé – et encore plus rapidement si les taux d’intérêts augmentent.

La crise financière et la récession subséquente n’expliquent pourtant qu’en partie ces niveaux élevés d’endettement. La vérité est que plusieurs pays d’Europe et du G20 ont vécu bien au-dessus de leurs moyens – y compris l’Allemagne, malgré sa réputation de parangon  de rectitude fiscale.

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