Barack Obama and Xi Jinping at White House. Ron SachsCNP/ZUMA Wire

La trampa de la codependencia sino-norteamericana

NEW HAVEN – Estados Unidos y China, cada vez más dependientes uno del otro a la hora de lograr un crecimiento económico sustentable, han caído en una clásica trampa de codependencia, encrespándose frente a los cambios en las reglas de compromiso. Los síntomas de esta patología insidiosa quedaron expuestos claramente durante la reciente visita del presidente chino, Xi Jinping, a Estados Unidos. Poco es lo que se logró y el camino por delante sigue siendo traicionero.

La codependencia entre Estados Unidos y China nació a fines de los años 1970, cuando Estados Unidos era víctima de una estanflación desoladora, y la economía china estaba en ruinas luego de la Revolución Cultural. Ambos países necesitaban nuevas recetas para revivir y crecer, y recurrieron el uno al otro en un matrimonio por conveniencia. China ofreció productos baratos que permitieron que los consumidores estadounidenses con ingresos restringidos llegaran a fin de mes, y Estados Unidos ofreció la demanda externa que apuntaló la estrategia de crecimiento liderado por las exportaciones de Deng Xiaoping.

Con el transcurso de los años, este acuerdo se transformó en una relación más profunda. Con una deficiencia de ahorro y con un anhelo de crecer, Estados Unidos dependió cada vez más del vasto reservorio de excedente de ahorro de China para llegar a fin de mes. Al anclar su moneda al dólar, los chinos acumularon un alto volumen de bonos del Tesoro de Estados Unidos, lo que ayudó al país del norte a financiar déficits presupuestarios sin precedentes.

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