Olivier Douliery/ Stringer

Qual é o problema do proteccionismo?

PORTO – Uma coisa é já certa sobre a próxima eleição presidencial nos Estados Unidos: o próximo presidente não será um defensor determinado do comércio livre. A presumível candidata Democrata, Hillary Clinton, é na melhor das hipóteses uma apoiante indiferente de um comércio mais livre, e da Parceria Trans-Pacífica em particular. O seu homólogo Republicano, Donald Trump, é descaradamente hostil a acordos comerciais que abram os mercados dos EUA. Quebrando a tradição Republicana moderna, Trump prevê uma taxa aduaneira de 35% sobre as importações de automóveis e peças produzidas pelas fábricas da Ford no México, e uma taxa aduaneira de 45% sobre as importações provenientes da China.

Os economistas defendem quase unanimemente que os efeitos macroeconómicos do plano de Trump seriam desastrosos. A rejeição do comércio livre e aberto devastaria a confiança e deprimiria o investimento. Os outros países reagiriam, impondo as suas próprias tarifas, o que diminuiria as exportações dos EUA. As consequências seriam parecidas às da Tarifa Smoot-Hawley, decretada pelo Congresso dos EUA em 1930 e promulgada por um anterior e infeliz presidente Republicano, Herbert Hoover, numa medida que agravou a Grande Depressão.

Mas só porque os economistas concordam, não quer dizer que tenham razão. Quando a economia se encontra numa armadilha de liquidez (quando a procura é deficiente, os preços estagnam ou caem, e as taxas de juro se aproximam de zero), a lógica macroeconómica normal desaparece. Essa conclusão aplica-se aos efeitos macroeconómicos das protecções aduaneiras em geral, e à Tarifa Smoot-Hawley em particular. Este ponto foi demonstrado por mim num artigo científico escrito (e hesito em dizê-lo) há 30 anos.

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

Registration is quick and easy and requires only your email address. If you already have an account with us, please log in. Or subscribe now for unlimited access.

required

Log in

http://prosyn.org/gT8yoJW/pt;
  1. An employee works at a chemical fiber weaving company VCG/Getty Images

    China in the Lead?

    For four decades, China has achieved unprecedented economic growth under a centralized, authoritarian political system, far outpacing growth in the Western liberal democracies. So, is Chinese President Xi Jinping right to double down on authoritarianism, and is the “China model” truly a viable rival to Western-style democratic capitalism?

  2. The assembly line at Ford Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

    Whither the Multilateral Trading System?

    The global economy today is dominated by three major players – China, the EU, and the US – with roughly equal trading volumes and limited incentive to fight for the rules-based global trading system. With cooperation unlikely, the world should prepare itself for the erosion of the World Trade Organization.

  3. Donald Trump Saul Loeb/Getty Images

    The Globalization of Our Discontent

    Globalization, which was supposed to benefit developed and developing countries alike, is now reviled almost everywhere, as the political backlash in Europe and the US has shown. The challenge is to minimize the risk that the backlash will intensify, and that starts by understanding – and avoiding – past mistakes.

  4. A general view of the Corn Market in the City of Manchester Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

    A Better British Story

    Despite all of the doom and gloom over the United Kingdom's impending withdrawal from the European Union, key manufacturing indicators are at their highest levels in four years, and the mood for investment may be improving. While parts of the UK are certainly weakening economically, others may finally be overcoming longstanding challenges.

  5. UK supermarket Waring Abbott/Getty Images

    The UK’s Multilateral Trade Future

    With Brexit looming, the UK has no choice but to redesign its future trading relationships. As a major producer of sophisticated components, its long-term trade strategy should focus on gaining deep and unfettered access to integrated cross-border supply chains – and that means adopting a multilateral approach.

  6. The Year Ahead 2018

    The world’s leading thinkers and policymakers examine what’s come apart in the past year, and anticipate what will define the year ahead.

    Order now