La esperanza de los recursos naturales

WASHINGTON, DC – Cuando un país cuadruplica sus entradas fiscales en un solo año, merece la pena prestarle atención. Es el caso de Ghana entre 2010 y 2011, gracias a los ingresos procedentes de sus industrias extractivas.

No es el único. Los crecientes ingresos por impuestos de los países en desarrollo ricos en recursos naturales reflejan no solamente los mayores precios de los productos básicos o commodities, sino también las normas internacionales que han mejorado la transparencia financiera en las actividades de extracción de petróleo, gas y minerales, reduciendo de manera importante las oportunidades de evasión fiscal. Estas normas tuvieron protagonismo en el temario de la Cumbre del G-8, celebrada recientemente en Irlanda del Norte. Es importante valorar estas iniciativas y exigir otras más.

Los mercados internacionales de productos básicos se encuentran bajo un alto nivel de presión. Desde el año 2000, los precios han ido ascendiendo, y la enorme demanda solo se ha visto interrumpida brevemente durante la crisis financiera de 2008, con la consecuencia evidente de que los precios han mostrado una extrema volatilidad. Al mismo tiempo, crecen los incentivos para entrar en mercados ilegales: cerca de un 20% del mercado mundial del coltán, metal precioso utilizado en equipos de comunicaciones móviles, se comercia ilegalmente.

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