Vers un rééquilibrer du bilan des états

MILAN – Jusqu'il n’y a peu, on ne parlait pas beaucoup du bilan des états. Leur mesure et leur publication étaient largement négligées. Aujourd'hui encore, même si les dettes des états reçoivent une attention considérable, leur colonne d’actifs en reçoit beaucoup moins.

À une autre époque, les états détenaient d'importants actifs industriels. Ce modèle «& commandant suprême de l'économie& » a été rejeté en grande partie à cause de ses très mauvaises performances, surtout quand des secteurs publiques étaient protégés de la concurrence (comme c'était la norme). L’efficacité en avait souffert. Mais, plus important encore, l'absence d'entrée et de sortie d’entreprises, ingrédient clé de l'innovation, avait provoqué une diminution du dynamisme et une augmentation des pertes financières au fil du temps.

Les défauts du modèle ont conduit à des privatisations dans de nombreux pays développés comme en développement. En Europe, la privatisation de l’économie était considérée comme une étape cruciale dans le processus d'intégration. La théorie, en Europe et ailleurs, était que les états ne peuvent pas être des propriétaires impartiaux d’actifs industriels. Ils finissent toujours par privilégier leurs propres actifs en utilisant la régulation, les marchés publics et des subsides cachés.

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