Les leçons économiques du Nord

Les débats économiques seraient moins nombreux si le monde passait plus de temps à observer ce qui fonctionne bien et ce qui ne fonctionne pas. Presque partout, des discussions houleuses ont eu lieu sur la manière de combiner les forces du marché à la sécurité sociale. La gauche appelle à une amplification de la protection sociale, tandis que la droite estime que cette amplification saperait la croissance économique et aggraverait les déficits fiscaux.

Or, il est possible de faire avancer le débat en examinant de plus près le succès des économies danoise, finlandaise, islandaise, néerlandaise, norvégienne et suédoise. Bien qu’aucune expérience régionale ne soit directement transférable, les pays nordiques ont réussi à associer le bien-être social à de hauts niveaux de revenus, à une croissance économique solide et à une stabilité macroéconomique. Ces pays sont également dotés d’administrations publiques d’excellente qualité.

Bien sûr, il existe également des différences parmi les pays nordiques, les dépenses sociales étant plus élevées au Danemark, aux Pays-Bas, en Norvège et en Suède qu’en Finlande et en Islande. Néanmoins, alors que les impôts nationaux aux États-Unis équivalent à 20 % du PNB, le ratio est de plus de 30 % dans les pays nordiques.

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