A armadilha do subsídio

CAMBRIDGE – Poucas são as políticas que contrapõem a boa economia tão directamente com a boa política como os subsídios destinados à alimentação e à energia. A questão dos subsídios que excedem a capacidade financeira tornou-se actualmente alvo de especial atenção por parte de três dos mais importantes novos líderes a nível mundial: O Presidente egípcio, Abdul Fatah Al-Sisi, o Presidente eleito da Indonésia, Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, e o Primeiro-Ministro indiano, Narendra Modi.

Al-Sisi vê-se confrontado com a necessidade de efectuar melhores cortes aos subsídios do que era esperado. Contrariamente, Modi, está a ter um desempenho pior do que o esperado, chegando mesmo a deitar por terra um acordo com a Organização Mundial do Comércio há muito aguardado. No que diz respeito a Jokowi, ainda é cedo para retirar conclusões.

Em Julho, Al-Sisi realizou o que poucos líderes do Norte de África ou do Médio Oriente conseguiram: efectuou um corte drástico aos subsídios de longa data destinados aos combustíveis tradicionais e permitiu que os preços aumentassem entre 41 e 78%. Surpreendentemente, esta medida não causou um grande número de protestos.

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