Paul Lachine

El experimento japonés

NEWPORT BEACH – Después de años de retoques, Japón ha iniciado un cambio fundamental en su paradigma de políticas. Las reacciones van desde un gran optimismo sobre la posibilidad de que el país salga del estancamiento económico que ha durado un cuarto de siglo, hasta preocupaciones porque el dramático cambio de curso de las autoridades en realidad empeore las cosas. Pero, si bien el debate naturalmente se centra en las maniobras económicas, políticas y financieras japonesas, el factor crítico bien puede residir en el extranjero.

El gobierno del primer ministro Shinzo Abe ha abrazado un enfoque revolucionario (más que evolutivo) en sus políticas económicas, que incluye varias iniciativas, algunas de las cuales en algún momento fueron consideradas inverosímiles, impensables, o incluso indeseables. Desde la duplicación de la oferta monetaria hasta estímulos fiscales adicionales y reformas estructurales de gran alcance, el nuevo paradigma de políticas no es nada menos que uno de los experimentos de política económica más audaces de la historia japonesa de posguerra.

Para demostrar su seriedad, los funcionarios japoneses aceleraron su compromiso con metas medibles. Por el lado de los insumos de esas políticas, han especificado y comenzaron a implementar compras de valores por $75 mil millones mensuales (el triple, en términos relativos, de las compras actuales de la Reserva Federal de EE. UU. bajo su régimen no convencional de política monetaria). Por el lado de la producción y después de muchos años de deflación persistente (los precios cayeron el 0,5 % el mes pasado), Japón se ha propuesto alcanzar una tasa de inflación del 2 % en dos años, resaltando así su compromiso para evitar el retiro prematuro de apoyo monetario al crecimiento.

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