De Moscú a Sochi

NUEVA YORK – Los Juegos Olímpicos de invierno que se celebran en Sochi son los primeros organizados por Rusia desde los Juegos Olímpicos de verano celebrados en Moscú en 1980, en la época de la Guerra Fría. Evidentemente, en ese tiempo mucho ha cambiado políticamente, pero los Juegos actuales brindan también una oportunidad para volver la vista a la historia económica reciente de Rusia y, además, atisbar el futuro.

Muchos que recuerdan el desplome de la Unión Soviética en 1991 y sus tumultuosas consecuencias creen que la economía actual de Rusia debe de estar empobrecida e inestable... y muy retrasada respecto de la China en auge. Se equivocan. Según el Fondo Monetario Internacional, la renta por habitante de Rusia en 2013, calculada en paridad de poder adquisitivo, asciende, aproximadamente, a 18.600 dólares, casi el doble de la de China, que asciende a unos 10.000 dólares, y, según los datos del Banco Mundial, la pobreza extrema es cercana a cero, frente al 11,8 por ciento de China en 2009 (el año más reciente sobre el que se dispone de datos).

Sí, la economía de Rusia ha estado impulsada recientemente no sólo por unas políticas macroeconómicas racionales, sino también por unos precios altos del petróleo y del gas. En realidad, el desplome de los precios del petróleo después de 1985 contribuyó a la grave crisis económica en la Unión Soviética y en Rusia al final del decenio de 1980 y a comienzos del de 1990. Se trata de un dato importante, ya que las reformas económicas aplicadas por el ex Presidente de la Unión Soviética Mijail Gorbachev y el ex Presidente de Rusia Boris Yeltsin afrontaron fuertes vientos de cara.

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