Paul Lachine

La nueva limitación de China: la inflación

BEIJING – La tasa de crecimiento económico de China se desaceleró en el segundo trimestre de este año al 7,5% interanual, de 7,7% en el período enero-marzo, en línea con los pronósticos de los economistas chinos de los últimos meses. En el inicio de 2013, en cambio, los economistas -tanto en el país como en el extranjero- eran mucho más optimistas sobre las perspectivas de crecimiento chino. ¿Qué fue lo que cambió?

El crecimiento de China mostró un patrón cíclico en las últimas dos décadas. Inmediatamente después del colapso de Lehman Brothers en septiembre de 2008, China dio a conocer un paquete de estímulo de 4 billones de yuanes (650.000 millones de dólares). La economía se recuperó rápidamente, y la tasa de crecimiento anualizada trepó a 12.1% en el primer trimestre de 2010.

A fin de frenar una burbuja inmobiliaria y evitar un aumento de la inflación, el Banco Popular de China (PBOC por su sigla en inglés) ajustó la política monetaria en enero de 2010. Luego, para detener la resultante pérdida de impulso económico, el PBOC distendió la política monetaria en noviembre de 2011. La mayoría de la gente creyó que, una vez más, se restablecería de inmediato el crecimiento rápido. Pero la recuperación recién se produjo en el cuarto trimestre de 2012. Peor aún, en lugar de permitir un impulso económico renovado, la tasa de crecimiento cayó en el segundo trimestre de 2013 y los principales pronosticadores hoy están revisando hacia abajo sus proyecciones de crecimiento para todo el año.

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