印度进行了一半的改革

2016/9/7 19:06:14 次浏览

    印度的政治文化富有历史感,公众舆论经常会在某一历史事件的重大周年时刻自发进行纪念。印度的经济改革始于1991年,今年正值25周年。最近,印度主流媒体纷纷发表文章,举办讨论会,总结改革25年来的成败得失。7月27日,《印度时报》发表一篇文章,题为《印度进行了一半的改革》,通过与印度过去进行纵向比较和与亚洲其他国家进行横向比较,对印度25年来的变化做了一个简明扼要的总结,值得一读。有意思的是,文章最后的结论是,作为一个民主国家,印度只能用蒙骗的方式、而不是公开说服的方式才能使经济改革得以推进。这个观点似值得重视。
  以下把该文全文译出,供感兴趣者参考。(选自毛四维印度观察微信公众号)

  
印度进行了一半的改革
作者:Sadanand Dhume
The Times of India, 2016年7月27日


  同自己过去相比较,印度比25年前繁荣多了。但在许多方面,仍落后于亚洲其他同辈。


  印度正在纪念实行经济改革25周年,不少评论文章充满自我庆贺的喜悦。
  的确,从大部分指标看,确实值得庆贺。就摆脱极端贫困的人数而言,印度速度仅在中国之后。1991年,在印度独立40多年后,几乎一半人口生活在日收入1.9美元之下(世界银行对极贫人口的当前标准)。而今,仅五分之一的人口在此标准之下。
  粗略估算,如果贫困线不变,印度脱贫人口约为3.75亿人。据世界货币基金估算,这些年来印度人均收入增长了三倍多,从1991年的550美元到去年的1800美元。由此,印度成长起对未来充满希望的一代新人,而他们的父辈则安于贫穷。
  同时,印度在世界经济中的地位也在上升。1991年,这个世界第二人口大国占全球GDP的比重仅3.6%,到2015年,这个数字翻了一番,为7%。世界银行估算印度外贸占GDP的比重增长了三倍,从1991年16.7%到2014年的49%。简言之,改革之前的印度经济无足轻重,与世界隔绝;今天,印度是全球经济中的一名重要成员,对外贸的依赖度与中国或印尼不相上下。
  再看吸收外国直接投资。过去,在世界眼中,印度经济的社会主义实验是一烂摊子,1991年吸收外资仅2.4亿美元,还不及当时印尼吸收的四分之一。而去年,440多亿美元的外国直接投资涌向印度,相当与印尼的三倍,是印度1991年数字的183倍。
  总之,过去25年的印度故事是正面的。虽然并非人人获益相同,但对大多数人来说,这是生活改善最快的时期。如果这一趋势得以保持(没有理由不能保持),这张报纸的大部分读者将在有生之年看到印度完全消除极贫。对于上一辈的印度人来说,这是难以想象的,更不会认为是理所当然的。
  然而,尽管经济改革取得的了不可否认的成就,但如果不是与自己阴暗的过去相比,而是与亚洲的同辈相比,情况就不那么乐观。
  比如,国际卫生组织估算今天印度的人均寿命(68岁)比25年前增加了10岁,但仍赶不上印尼的人均寿命(69岁),并继续落在中国(76岁)之后。在1991年至2015年间,印度的婴儿死亡率下降了一半还多,从千分之86降至38,但仍几乎是印尼的两倍,中国的四倍。
  或者再来看手机,这个领域通常被视为印度改革后经济奇迹的一个标志。据国际电讯联盟估计,印度手机使用率在去年是79%,与五年前的62%相比提升不少。但当你知道现在中国的手机使用率是93%,而在印尼竟高达132%,印度的所谓“奇迹”便不值一提。
  换言之,当今的印度比上一代人的印度要好许多,但纯从繁荣程度和人类发展的角度看,确无法声称普通印度人比他们在中国和印尼的同辈要生活得更好一些。
  在回首1991年改革的热议之中,前总理纳拉辛哈·拉奥在公众舆论中重新享受他应有的地位。政治学家维纳伊·希塔帕蒂(Vinay Sitapati)在他的新书《刚柔并济的雄狮:拉奥如何改变了印度》中写道,拉奥既狡诈又果断,表面上看,他领导的党正在坚持尼赫鲁的经济政策遗产,但实际上,这些遗产大部分被抛弃了。尼赫鲁的荒唐(英地拉·甘地更使之加剧)在于,把贸易视为剥削,并相信聪明的行政官员能比市场更好地配置资源。拉奥向这两种观点发起有力的挑战。
  拉奥刚投身政治时是个社会主义者,但之后他认识到,印度的实验完全失败,以致上世纪50年代落后于印度的国家到80年代纷纷超过印度。拉奥改革事业至今为止最重要的继承者是前总理瓦杰帕伊,他同样看到两点:独立后的印度走上了国家主导发展的错误道路,作为结果,印度远落后于东亚国家。
  那么,纳兰德拉·莫迪又如何?毫无疑问,这位总理志在使印度成为一个强大繁荣的国家。但是,到目前为止,在使劳工法合理化、在更加适合私企发展的行业对国企进行私有化改造等方面,我们尚不见莫迪全力推动进一步改革。
  印度结束工业许可证制度和投身世界贸易已经很久了。但在印度这样一个民主国家,到目前为止,只有“拉奥模式”行得通,那就是只得用蒙骗而不是公开说服的方式进行改革。两年前,许多人希望莫迪会运用他非凡的沟通天赋,向公众推销必须而又艰难的改革。不幸的是,我们仍在等待。


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India’s half-done reforms: Compared with its past, India has prospered over the past 25 years. But in many ways it still lags its peers in Asia


July 27, 2016, 2:00 am IST Sadanand Dhume in TOI Edit Page | Edit Page, India | TOI


As India marks 25 years since the advent of economic reforms, it’s hard to escape the note of self-congratulation in much of the commentary the anniversary has inspired.


Indeed, by most measures there is much to celebrate. In terms of sheer numbers, only China has pulled more people out of extreme poverty faster than India. In 1991, more than four decades after Independence, nearly half of Indians lived on less than $1.90 a day, the World Bank’s current measure for extreme poverty. Today only about one in five slip below that benchmark.


By a rough calculation, that’s about 375 million fewer poor people than if the poverty rate had remained unchanged. The International Monetary Fund estimates that Indian per capita income more than tripled from about $550 in 1991 to $1,800 last year. As a result, an entire generation has grown up expecting upward mobility where their parents and grandparents accepted stagnation.


At the same time, India’s weight in the world has grown. In 1991, the world’s second most populous country accounted for a scant 3.6% of global gross domestic product. By 2015 this had nearly doubled to 7%. The World Bank estimates that India’s trade to GDP ratio nearly tripled from 16.7% in 1991 to 49% in 2014. Simply put, pre-reform India was economically insignificant and cut off from the world. Today it is an important player in the global economy, and as dependent on trade for its prosperity as China or Indonesia.


Or take foreign direct investment. In 1991, still tainted in the world’s eyes by its failed experiment with socialism, India attracted a meagre $240 million in inflows, less than a fourth of what Indonesia managed. Last year, more than $44 billion worth of FDI poured into India, about three times what Indonesia attracted, and a staggering 183 times more than the 1991 figure.


In short, the story of the past quarter century has been incontrovertibly positive for India. Not everyone has benefited equally, but life has improved faster for more people than at any time before. If these trends hold – and there’s no reason they shouldn’t – most readers of this newspaper will see extreme poverty abolished in their lifetimes. For previous generations of Indians this would have been hard to imagine, let alone take for granted.


But while the gains from economic reform are impossible to refute, the picture looks less rosy when you benchmark India not against its own dismal past, but against its peers in Asia.


For instance, the World Health Organization estimates that the average Indian lives 10 years longer today (68 years) than a quarter century ago. But he has yet to catch up with the average Indonesian (69 years), and continues to lag the average Chinese (76 years). Between 1991 and 2015 India slashed infant mortality by more than half – from 86 deaths to 38 deaths per 1,000 births. But that’s still nearly twice as high as infant mortality in Indonesia, and four times as high as in China.


Or take mobile phones, widely cited as a defining feature of India’s post-reform economic miracle. The International Telecommunications Union estimates that mobile subscriptions in India reached 79% last year, up from 62% just five years earlier. That sounds awfully impressive until you realise that in China the mobile penetration rate is 93% and in Indonesia it’s a stratospheric 132%.


In other words, India is much better off than it was a generation ago. But, purely in terms of prosperity and human development, it’s impossible to argue that the average Indian is better off than her peers in China and Indonesia.


In the warm glow of revisiting the 1991 reforms, former Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao is enjoying a well-deserved comeback in the public imagination. In “Half-Lion”, political scientist Vinay Sitapati recalls the combination of guile and decisiveness that allowed Rao to dismantle much of Jawaharlal Nehru’s economic legacy while leading a party ostensibly committed to upholding it. Nehru’s folly – exacerbated greatly by Indira Gandhi – was to associate trade with exploitation, and to believe that wise bureaucrats could delegate resources better than markets. Rao effectively challenged both ideas.


Though Rao began his political career as a socialist himself, over time he grasped how badly the Indian experiment had soured, allowing countries that had lagged India in the 1950s to race ahead by the 1980s. Rao’s most consequential successor thus far, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, shared these twin insights: that independent India had erred in choosing state-led development, and that as a result it trailed much of East Asia.


What of Narendra Modi? There’s no question that the prime minister would like to see a strong and prosperous India. But we’re yet to see him make a full-throated case for further reforms such as rationalising labour laws and privatising state-owned firms in sectors of the economy better suited to the private sector.


India has come a long way by ending industrial licensing and embracing world trade. But in a democracy there’s only so far that the Rao model – reform by guile, not public persuasion – can go. Two years ago, many people hoped that Modi would apply his considerable gifts of communication to sell tough but necessary reforms to the public. Unfortunately, we’re still waiting. 毛四维印度观察毛四维印度观察毛四维

 
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