The alert that comes from the numbers

By ETCO
29/10/2004

Source: Gazeta Mercantil - Caderno A - Page 3, 29/10/2004

One of the great knots for the resumption of Brazilian development is, without a doubt, the expansion of the informal economy. A study by the secretary of Development, Labor and Solidarity of the Municipality of São Paulo, Márcio Pochmann, now released, concludes that five out of ten new jobs in the capital are informal.


That is, people without a formal contract who earn up to R $ 780 and feel, obviously, insecure and without horizons of growth.


It is a harsh reality. The situation of adversity becomes even more disturbing when it is found that the entry into the labor market is increasingly narrow for young people.


Judging by a survey carried out by the Ministry of Labor just over a year ago, the population aged between 16 and 24 years old corresponds to 44% of the total mass of unemployed.


Interestingly, the economy's growth statistics are improving. The challenge is how to overcome insecurity about the future.


Keynes stated that business investment decisions depend directly on the greater or lesser degree of uncertainty.


For the country to invest in the long term and thus create the basis for continued growth, it is essential that interest rates fall, that taxes fall in relation to GDP, that bureaucracy ceases to be a daily barrier, among others. .


These are course corrections that would greatly contribute to providing security to the investor. As this has not happened, it remains vulnerable to loss of competitiveness, as a study by the World Economic Forum records, which moves Brazil from 54 to 57 in the world ranking. In relation to business, we are also backwards. We went from 34 to 37 place.


It's worrying. Mainly because of the reasons for the setback, aligned in the research: tax burden, the intricate bureaucratic mesh, difficulties in accessing capital, deficiencies in infrastructure and corruption. It is ironic. We are losing positions in all fields where we should be strong: in technology, in education, in the reliability of public institutions.


All of that needs to change. The idea that the citizen should serve the State without the necessary counterparts is not supported in the real world. A brief analysis of the Brazilian State shows that everything is done to hinder and not to release creative energies. There are those who insist on insisting that the limitations to development come only from abroad. Consequence of the hostility of international organizations. Consequence of the foreign debt or subsidies policy of competitors.


These are important points, but it is urgent to change what depends on ourselves. The truth is that we have not yet found the way to harmonize growth with social inclusion. In 1995 we were the 7 economy on the planet. We are now 15. We dropped eight points in the ranking. In the same period, the so-called emerging countries grew by an average of 6% per year. Brazil only 2,4%.


A recent study by the Getúlio Vargas Foundation showed that the number of people who do not earn enough to eat has grown. There are more than 48 million Brazilians in poverty.


It is this contingent that becomes easy prey for informality. Reducing it will be decisive to increase the supply of formal jobs, the first step in a long journey towards reducing unfair competition.



Emerson Kapaz - President of the Brazilian Institute of Competition Ethics