Grandes éxitos de países pequeños

ZURICH – La votación de Escocia sobre la independencia respecto del Reino Unido ha alentado un debate generalizado sobre la secesión de Estados pequeños, como, por ejemplo, Eslovenia y Croacia en 1991, o la campaña actual en pro de la independencia respecto de España en la región autónoma de Cataluña, pero ni la actitud de centrar la atención estrictamente en las consecuencias políticas y económicas para Escocia y el Reino Unido ni –para el caso, es igual– el decisivo resultado del referéndum a favor de la unión deben eclipsar las enseñanzas más amplias que se desprenden de una de las tendencias geopolíticas más desatendidas de nuestra época: el ascenso de países pequeños.

El 75 por ciento, aproximadamente, de los países pequeños actuales se formó en los setenta últimos años, en la mayoría de los casos como consecuencia de transiciones democráticas más amplias y en combinación con el aumento del comercio y la mundialización. Sus éxitos y fracasos son más pertinentes para el debate actual que las consecuencias fiscales –pongamos por caso– de la independencia escocesa.

Las enseñanzas que se desprenden de esos casos no son sólo útiles para países nuevos y potencialmente nuevos. A países pequeños y relativamente jóvenes de África, del Caribe y de Oriente Medio puede resultarles beneficioso también examinar los secretos del éxito de Singapur, las causas y los efectos de la burbuja inmobiliaria de Irlanda y la decisión de Dinamarca de crear sólidas capacidades contraterroristas, pese a su relativa seguridad. De hecho, semejantes consideraciones pueden ayudarlos a trazar una vía a la prosperidad económica y la cohesión social.

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