russian soldiers Sergey Nikolaev/ZumaPress

El presupuesto militar indefendible de Rusia

PARÍS – El 9 de mayo, Rusia llevó a cabo su mayor desfile militar desde la era soviética. En la tradición de esa era, la Plaza Roja estaba colmada con el último equipamiento del ejército, incluido el nuevo tanque T-14 "Armata". Y, también en la tradición de esa era, la gente común no perdió tiempo para hacer bromas cuando el tanque se quedó parado durante el ensayo del desfile: "El Armata verdaderamente tiene un poder destructivo sin precedentes; un batallón puede destruir todo el presupuesto ruso".

La broma, aunque exagerada (cada tanque cuesta unos 8 millones de dólares), resaltó otro retroceso a la vida soviética: un gasto excesivo en el ejército. Hoy no cabe ninguna duda de que el gasto militar del Kremlin está amenazando la posición fiscal de Rusia, que ya se vio afectada por los bajos precios mundiales del petróleo y por las sanciones económicas de Occidente. Y esta oleada de gastos no da señales de desaceleración. En los últimos meses, el crecimiento en el gasto militar se aceleró rápidamente, excediendo los planes ya ambiciosos de las autoridades.

El presupuesto de 2015 que Rusia desarrolló el verano pasado estaba basado en la presunción de que los precios del petróleo se mantendrían en 100 dólares por barril, con un crecimiento anual del PIB y una inflación de alrededor del 2% y el 5% respectivamente. Luego los precios del petróleo se derrumbaron, la economía se contrajo y la inflación alcanzó los dos dígitos. El gobierno de Rusia tardó en aceptar la realidad, y el presidente Vladimir Putin recién firmó un presupuesto revisado el mes pasado.

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