A la traîne de la course aux investissements étrangers

En matière d’investissements directs à l’étranger (IDE), l’Amérique latine est dans une situation fort délicate. Il est vrai que les IDE entrants atteignaient environ 70 milliards de dollars en 2006 ; pourtant, ce chiffre est bien inférieur au pic de 1998-1999, et encore, une grande partie des IDE provient de sociétés d'Amérique centrale investissant dans des pays voisins, alors que les afflux de capitaux depuis l'Europe et les États-Unis ont chuté. En plus des nombreuses sociétés qui ont quitté la région, plusieurs investissements importants que la Chine avait promis (en particulier au Brésil) ne se sont pas concrétisés.

Dans les années 70, puis dans les années 90, la proportion globale de l’IDE mondial était de 17 % en Amérique latine. Elle n’est désormais que de 8 % (en 2006), après une moyenne de 11 % durant les cinq années précédentes. Parmi les pays en voie de développement, la part de l'IDE mondial de l’Amérique latine a également chuté, passant de 40‑50 % dans les années 70 à environ la moitié en 2006.

Les politiques de la région ont certainement pour priorité de résoudre les problèmes du chômage et des secteurs informels – où est produite près de la moitié des biens et services. La majorité des investissements et la croissance des sociétés nationales sont tributaires du prix des matières premières, qui est actuellement élevé et, par conséquent, ne favorise pas la création d'emplois. De même, les IDE affluent uniquement dans les secteurs qui consomment beaucoup de ressources, tandis qu’ils ont baissé du côté des services et quasiment stagné dans le secteur de la fabrication.

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