¿Qué perspectiva para el agro?

137

Carlos Fernández*

Como lo habíamos vaticinado en columnas anteriores, el resultado económico del país en 2017, medido por el Producto Interno Bruto (PIB), fue, en verdad, precario: 1,8% de crecimiento respecto a 2016, año que ya había presentado, también, un pobre resultado de 2,0% respecto a 2015. El sector que más creció fue el agropecuario, con un registro de crecimiento de 4,9% respecto al año de 2016. Sin embargo, su bajo peso dentro del PIB (6,7%) impidió que jalonara aún más el crecimiento de la economía en su conjunto.

Los sectores que impidieron una mayor debacle

Con un crecimiento en 2017 del 3,8 y 3, 4%, respectivamente, el sector financiero y el de servicios sociales (administración pública, defensa, salud, educación, servicio doméstico) fueron responsables de que los resultados económicos del año anterior no presentaran un desastre mayor. Ello obedece a que el peso de estos dos sectores en la conformación del PIB (21,2 y 15,6%, respectivamente) es lo suficientemente alto como para atenuar el decrecimiento de sectores como la industria, la construcción o el transporte.

O sea que tenemos una economía empujada por la especulación financiera y por los servicios sociales que, en casos como salud y educación, dejan mucho que desear en materia de calidad.

Pero examinemos más en detalle el comportamiento observado del sector agrario. Su crecimiento de 4,9% esconde variaciones en sus componentes muy esclarecedoras.

Café, otros cultivos y ganadería

Después de presentar un crecimiento notable en los años 2013, 2014 y 2015, el café entró en caída en 2016 y, en 2017, decreció 1,7% respecto al año 2016. En este comportamiento inciden el ciclo internacional cafetero, la exacerbada competencia de países que han adquirido importancia reciente en el mundo cafetero, la dependencia respecto a la especulación de las grandes transnacionales en las bolsas en que se negocia el producto, etc. Por su parte, los cultivos diferentes al café presentaron un importante crecimiento de 8,1%, destacándose, entre los cultivos transitorios, los cereales, las legumbres, raíces y tubérculos, y, entre los cultivos permanentes, los frutos y semillas oleaginosas con un espectacular crecimiento del 41,3%. En este resultado incide enormemente la palma africana.

De otro lado, la producción pecuaria presentó un crecimiento del 4,1%, destacándose en él la leche sin elaborar y los huevos.

El panorama presenta, pues, la consolidación de un sector capitalista agrario que, no obstante, sigue rindiéndole tributo al gran latifundio atrasado e inexplotado, como lo confirmó el pasado Censo Agropecuario. Pero, en razón, de los nexos económicos y políticos entre un sector financiero internacionalizado y la búsqueda de nuevas posibilidades de inversión, un sector de inversionistas viene trabajando la posibilidad de valorizar tierras alejadas, con baja densidad poblacional, con falta de vías de comunicación y otra infraestructura, baldías o con títulos para elevar la producción de bienes agrícolas y pecuarios. En eso consiste el programa de las Zidres, sobre el cual hemos realizado algunas aproximaciones analíticas en artículos anteriores.

Lo nuevo que se presenta al respecto es que el gobierno ha empezado la ejecución de la ley 1776 de 2016, que les dio vida legal a estas zonas de interés para el desarrollo rural, económico y social. En efecto, el Consejo Nacional de Política Económica y Social ratificó el documento Conpes 3917 del 7 de febrero del presente año, mediante el cual aprobó la determinación de unas áreas de referencia para la identificación de Zidres. Las áreas de referencia identificadas ascienden a 7’278.964 hectáreas, la mayor parte de las cuales están localizadas en los departamentos de Vichada (34,1%) y Meta (32,9%). Si bien este ejercicio no implica una identificación ni una delimitación de las áreas para las Zidres, sí constituye un primer paso en el proceso de su implementación, afectando, en particular, la altillanura, con elementos geoestratégicos que habrá que dilucidar. Entre tanto, las Zonas de Reserva Campesina aprobadas son apenas seis frente a más de cincuenta solicitudes de creación. El carácter clasista del gobierno brilla en todo su esplendor.

* Economista. 

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