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应对非包容性增长

米兰—几年前,我有幸主持了一个发展中国家增长委员会。委员会成员拥有大量发展中国家经济、政治和社会决策经验,尽管他们各有不同,但在一些关键点上意见统一。其中有两点让我至今印象深刻。

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首先,我们撰写的最终报告认为,非包容性增长模式最终永远要失败。这些模式无法产生持续的高增长,而持续高增长是减少贫困、满足健康、安全和为社会做出生产和创造贡献的基本志向的必备条件。非包容性增长模式无法充分利用或错误地使用宝贵的人力资源;也常常导致政治和社会动荡(以意识形态或种族极化为显著特征),随之而来的是剧烈的政策波动或政策瘫痪。

我们的第二项统一结论是持续增长需要合乎逻辑、适应力强的战略,它要基于共同的价值观和目标、信任,以及一定程度的共识。当然,实现这一点说起来容易做起来难。

许多发展中国家经历了漫长的缓慢增长或无增长。在一些国家,领导人一筹莫展,也不知道应该做些什么。但在大部分情况下,有效“增长模式”的要素是众所周知的,问题在于缺少关于如何实施的政治或社会共识。

实现更高的增长均衡并非逐步或渐进的转变。它需要预期和政治实现不连续的跳跃(discontinuous leap),需要政治和社会共识发生根本性变迁。在发生这些变迁时,领导扮演着关键角色,为公民提供基于共同价值观、所有相关利益方都有可能支持的替代愿景。这样的领导可以来自上层,来自下层,也可以来自代表组织。但许多国家出现长期低增长均衡的现象表明,这样的领导常常根本不存在。

非包容性增长的溢出效应几乎随处可见,如社会极化、政策僵局和不连贯、普遍的公共信任缺失等,只是程度不同罢了。从这个角度将,发展中国的经验是发达经济体决策者和各种相关利益方需要汲取的重要教训。

在辨别让经济不包容在过去三十年中有所减少的因素方面,我们取得了一些进展。这很重要:只有理解了挑战的性质,我们才能够制定更有效的应对之道。如果我们因为有缺陷或过于匆忙的分析而误诊了问题,应对措施就难以起效,甚至会适得其反。

尽管如此,目前所进行的分析尚未让人们广泛认识到非包容性增长给生产率和经济绩效(用常规手段衡量)所造成的威胁。非包容性增长的消极经济影响随着时间而逐渐增加和放大,如果不拿出集体行动——通常由政府实施,但非必须如此——改变现有分配模式,将会一直如此。

一些人反对这一看法,因为他们认为,经济绩效和动态背后的因素,独立于分配模式。但我想提醒他们来自发展中国家经验的第二个教训:费包容性增长模式破坏了信任,最终破坏了治理,反过来又削弱了决策者保持支持高增长的政策和战略的能力。

坦率地说,有洞见的分析有其用处,但如果没有围绕共同价值观和目标的广泛的社会和政治一致,就不会有变化发生——而这正是当今许多国家缺少的东西。人们需要信任彼此和他们的领袖,需要在关于如何评估和应对极化的经济和社会趋势方面取得一致。

与此同时,持续不作为将恶化疏离,形成不信任和瘫痪的恶性循环,只有打破这一循环,才有采取有效行动的可能。对于非包容性挑战的诸多维度,我们已经有了许多专门的应对计划。这些挑战既包括收入和财富不平等,也包括自动化、人工智能和工作的未来。尽管初衷良好,但这些计划能否为有效的政策应对创造条件,仍然有待观察。

对这些复杂问题的有洞见的分析的价值不应该低估。但我们不可认为做出正确诊断便足以克服政治僵局。另一个关键要素是直接参与。重塑公共信任需要深度持续的投入,以及足够广泛、能够克服如今在发达经济体普遍存在的政治和社会分裂的新共识。

从这个角度看,围绕包容性问题层出不穷地出现的委员会和其他项目确实令人感到鼓舞。若不是极化程度如此巨大,这些委员会和项目可谓过剩和多余了。集合来自商界、业界、劳工、政府、学者和公民社会的声音——并且尽可能频繁地集合这些声音——正是我们现在所需要做的事。

包容性增长任务的参与层面也许有一些模糊,特别是与具体的分析相比。尽管如此,这是至关重要的。将彼此意见不一甚至互不信任的人集合起来,这是迈向构建未来集体行动的基础的第一步。

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