Lehren aus dem Norden

Man könnte sich etliche Wirtschaftsdebatten sparen, würde man mehr Zeit für die Analyse dessen aufwenden, was wirklich funktioniert und was nicht. Beinahe überall sind heftige Debatten darüber im Gang, wie Marktkräfte und soziale Sicherheit unter einen Hut zu bringen sind. Die Linke fordert eine Ausweitung des sozialen Schutzes und die Rechte meint, genau das würde dem Wirtschaftswachstum schaden und zu größeren Haushaltsdefiziten führen.

Die Debatte kann beschleunigt werden, indem man einen Blick auf die erfolgreichen Ökonomien in Dänemark, Finnland, Island, den Niederlanden, Norwegen und Schweden wirft. Regionale Erfahrung sind zwar nicht so leicht übertragbar, aber den nordischen Ländern ist es gelungen, den Sozialstaat mit hohem Einkommensniveau, solidem Wirtschaftswachstum und makroökonomischer Stabilität zu verbinden. Auch im Bereich Staatsführung hat man hohe Standards erreicht.

Natürlich gibt es auch zwischen den einzelnen nordischen Ländern Unterschiede. Die sozialstaatlichen Ausgaben sind in Dänemark, den Niederlanden, Norwegen und Schweden am höchsten und in Finnland und Island etwas niedriger. Während allerdings das Steuerniveau in den USA auf Bundesebene bei etwa 20 % des BIP liegt, beträgt dieser Wert in Skandinavien über 30 %.

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