Tras los pasos de Zhu Rongji

SHANGHAI – Hace poco se publicó un libro con discursos del ex premier chino Zhu Rongji, hecho que volvió a poner sobre el tapete el audaz (y a menudo polémico) programa de reformas económicas que implementó en los años noventa, que incluyó medidas de control de las empresas de propiedad estatal y una amplia reestructuración del sistema bancario. Sin embargo, el debate ha tomado una dirección inesperada, ya que los medios de prensa chinos (a diferencia de la actitud que predominó las últimas dos décadas) han adoptado una postura mucho más favorable a Zhu.

Los desafíos a los que se enfrentó Zhu tienen muchos puntos en común con los que enfrenta el actual premier Li Keqiang; además, este comparte con su antecesor el compromiso con la transformación económica. Por ello, este cambio de clima puede ser señal de que las reformas estructurales cuentan cada vez con más apoyo. Pero, ¿son Zhu y Li tan iguales como parecen?

Hoy, como en los noventa, China experimenta un aumento rampante de la deuda de los gobiernos de nivel local y de los bancos comerciales; creciente riesgo fiscal y financiero; incertidumbre sobre las reformas institucionales; y caída de los ingresos del gobierno central. Según Bloomberg, Li será el primer premier chino desde la época de Zhu que no cumpla la meta oficial de crecimiento anual. Pero a pesar de estas semejanzas evidentes, la situación de China en la actualidad es radicalmente diferente a la de 20 años atrás.

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