Agefi Luxembourg - mai 2024

AGEFI Luxembourg 18 Mai 2024 Banque privée / Economie A près un programme à Detroit et Cleveland les 22 et 23 avril, qui avait compris des visites chez Guardian, BorgWarner,AveryDennison etGoodyear, S.A.R. leGrand-DucHéritier et leVice-Pre- mierministre,ministre desAffaires étran- gères et duCommerce extérieur, Xavier Bettel, ont effectué une visite de travail àNew York et auDelaware, les 24 et 25 avril 2024. L'objectif de cette visite de travail aux États-Unis a été d'approfondir les relations avec les principaux investisseurs industriels américains au Luxem- bourg, sachant que les États-Unis représentent le plus important partenaire commercial non-euro- péen de notre pays. ANewYork, S.A.R. leGrand-DucHéritier et lemi- nistre Bettel ont ainsi participé à une conférence or- ganisée par l'agence spatiale du Luxembourg (LSA) au sujet du développement de l'économie spatiale. Plusieurs panels de discussions ont été or- ganisés dans le cadre de cette conférence. Dans son intervention, leministre Bettel est revenu sur les défis géopolitiques auxquels le monde fait face, en soulignant l'importance d'une coopération étroite et du respect dudroit international, y inclus dans le monde de l'espace. «Depuis plus de 30 ans, le Luxembourg fait figure de pionnier dans l'utilisation de l'espace à des fins commerciales et coopératives. L'un des piliers fon- damentaux de la stratégie luxembourgeoise de dé- veloppement du secteur spatial est d'œuvrer à l'établissement de conditions de concurrence équi- tables au niveau international. Notre objectif est de progresser avec d'autres nations en encourageant le développement de collaborations entre les ac- teurs commerciaux. Nous sommes convaincus que tous les acteurs doivent jouer leur rôle pour faire avancer l'économie du«NewSpace» aubénéfice de l'humanité, tout en s'assurant du respect de la du- rabilité dans l'espace», a souligné leministre Bettel. Des entrevues avec les dirigeants de Redwire et de l'AIAC (American IndustrialAcquisitionCorpora- tion), détenteur de l'entreprise Eurofoil Luxem- bourg, ont également figuré au programme. La délégation a ensuite participé à la 11 e cérémonie de remise du «Luxembourg-American Business Award». Organisé par la Luxembourg American Chamber of Commerce et le Luxembourg Trade& Investment Office à NewYork, le BusinessAward récompense tous les deux ans des entreprises amé- ricaines établies au Grand-Duché pour leur rôle important et leur contributiondurable à l'économie luxembourgeoise. Parmi les précédents lauréats fi- gurentAmazon, Goodyear, Guardian,AveryDen- nison Corporation, Husky Injection Molding Sys- tems, Delphi Corp, Airtech Advanced Materials Group, Ampacet Corporation et DuPont. Pour cette édition 2024, le prix a été décerné à Red- wire, dont le site européen auLuxembourg conçoit et développe des bras robotiques pour des mis- sions orbitales et de vol libre afin de soutenir et de permettre des activités telles que l'entretien et le ra- vitaillement de satellites, la fabrication dans l'es- pace ou encore la capture de débris. Lors de la cérémonie de remise du prix, S.A.R. le Grand-Duc Héritier a déclaré : «Ce soir, nous célé- brons Redwire pour ses réalisations remarquables dans l'industrie spatiale et sa contribution aux re- lations commerciales entre les États-Unis et le Luxembourg. Nous honorons une entreprise amé- ricaine tournée vers l'avenir. Pour la première fois en effet, le Luxembourg-American Business Award est décerné à une entreprise dont les acti- vités se situent au-delà de nos frontières terrestres, une entreprise qui tend la main vers les étoiles. Il ne s'agit pas d'une coïncidence ou d'un dévelop- pement venu de nulle part. Le Luxembourg a for- tement investi dans l'industrie spatiale, favorisant un environnement propice à la prospérité des en- treprises. Notre histoire nous a appris à ne pas nous reposer sur nos acquis et à sortir des sentiers battus, et nos dirigeants politiques ont toujours su anticiper les changements économiques qui al- laient influencer notre économie.» La délégation luxembourgeoise, présidée par S.A.R. le Grand-Duc Héritier et dirigée par le mi- nistre Bettel, s'est ensuite rendue àWilmington afin de rencontrer les dirigeants de DuPont, entreprise industrielle active au Grand-Duché depuis 1962. ministèredesAffairesétrangèreseteuropéennes,de laDéfense, de laCoopérationetduCommerceextérieur S.A.R. le Grand-Duc Héritier et Xavier Bettel en visite de travail aux États-Unis «Approfondir les relations avec les principaux investisseurs industriels américains au Luxembourg » ©MAE OPINION – by Prof. Dr. Bruno COLMANT, Member of the RoyalAcademy of Belgium N eoliberalismopposes the so- cial redistribution that cha- racterizes theUnitedStates with the trickle-down theory, which asserts that the income of theweal- thiest individuals is reinjected into the economy, contributing directly or indi- rectly to general economic activity and employment in the rest of society. Thewealthymust, therefore, be freed fromexcessive taxation. This theorywas expressed,without naming it, by William Jennings Bryan (1860-1925), Secretary of State underWoodrowWilson (1856-1924), President of the United States from 1913 to 1921, but first put forward in 1932 by anAmericanhumorist,Will Rogers, who mocked the tax-cutting program of President Herbert Hoover (1874-1964, President of the United States from1929 to 1933). It was this theory that led, in the 1980s, to lower the tax burden on the wealthiest so that their wealth and incomewould be allocated to the prosperity of the less fortunate. Trickle-down is the antithesis of the Keynesian theories underpinning the welfare state concept. This opposition reflects the difference between the European welfare state (a term used since the French Revolution of 1848 but first coined by a parliamentarian of the Second Empire in 1864) and the neoliberal context, which promotes indivi- dual foresight. However, It should be noted that the trickle-down effect seems to have worked more in the opposite direction,i.e.,wealthhasflowedfromthelesswealthy to themore fortunate, with increased social inequali- ties in theUnitedStates. In 2015, the IMF published a study entitled "Causes and Consequences of Income Inequality: A Global Perspective," which concluded with these few edi- fying lines: "Thedrivers of inequalityvary considera- bly from country to country, but some common fac- tors are the skills premium associated with technical changeandglobalization,theweakeningoflaborpro- tection and the lack of financial inclusion in developing countries. We find that increa- singtheincomeshareofthepoorandmid- dleclassincreasesgrowthwhileincreasing the income share of the top 20% leads to lower growth - in other words, when the rich get richer, the benefits don't trickle down to others." ThisisreminiscentoftheLaffercurve.Aspart of the Chicago School, economist Arthur Laffer(1940-),whowasveryinfluen- tial during the administration of Roland Reagan and DonaldTrump(1946-, President of the United States bet- ween 2017 and 2021),whoawarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2019, had surmised that when the tax rate is toohigh, taxpayers reduce their labor input or consumption, depending on the tax concerned. As early as 1978, he championed Proposition 13, aimedatreducingrealestatetaxesinCalifornia,where RonaldReaganwasgovernor.WhenReaganbecame PresidentoftheUnitedStatesin1981,hehelpeddraft the Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981 and the Tax ReformAct of 1986. However, his influence was not confined to the United States, as the tax policies of Margaret Thatcher and Helmut Kohl (1930-2017, Chancellor of Germany from1982 to 1998) were ins- piredbyhimtovaryingdegrees.AccordingtoArthur Laffer, there is a maximum level of tax revenue beyond which it falls if the tax rate rises, as it then plays an inhibiting role. Arthur Laffer's idea, conceived in1974 ona table cor- ner in Washington DC's Two Continents restaurant, couldbe summedupas aparabolic curveonagraph showing the tax rate on the x-axis and the amount of tax revenue on the y-axis. When the tax rate is too high, taxpayers reduce theirwork input. Theshapeofthecurveimpliesthatthesametaxreve- nue can be obtained for two tax rates, one low, the other high. It is intuitive, according toArthur Laffer, that it is better to raise taxes at a lower rate for a given taxrevenue.Alow-ratesystemonabroadbaseispre- ferable to a high-rate systemon a narrowbase. Ontheotherhand,oneofthepillarsofmostEuropean tax systems is progressive tax brackets. The logic is simple:taxisleviedinincrementalbracketsatahigher marginal rate. This progression is designed to tax the formationof savings.As an individual's income rises, consumption stabilizes, or at least does not increase as quickly as income. These two parameters are not proportional. There comes a point in incomewhen a taxpayer saves an increasingproportion. As tax scales areprogressive, the taxationof income intended for saving increases marginally. Each monetary unit saved is thus subject to amarginally increasing taxburden. Theprogressivityof personal income tax thus penalizes the formation of savings, which economists refer to as the marginal propen- sity to save. This formulation also corresponds to a tax theory, "equality of sacrifice." According to this theory, the utility of a good decreases as its volume increases. Taxesmust, therefore, drawon the income brackets allocated to non-vital, or even less essential, needs. The intensity of tax sacrifice must increase with income. It couldbe argued thatwhile the formation of savings is penalizedby taxprogressivity, thepro- pensity toconsume is, bycomplementarity, favored. Under the influence of Maynard Keynes (1883- 1946), some authors have even argued that total employment (resulting from consumption) could not be achievedwithout progressive taxation. The difference between the Anglo-Saxon capitalist model and the European welfare state is, therefore, highly revealing regarding the direct taxation of per- sonal income. Europeanwelfare states are characteri- zed by heavier taxation, reflecting the commutative nature of taxation, i.e., the latter is only legitimate on condition that it has satisfactory counterparts. Neoliberalism opposes social redistribution with trickle-down theory, which asserts that the incomes of the wealthiest individuals are reinjected into the economy,contributingdirectlyorindirectlytogeneral economic activity and employment in the rest of society. So,weneed to free thewealthiest fromexces- sive taxation. But, unfortunately, trickle-down has defiedthelawsofgravity,enrichingthemostaffluent at the expense ofworkers. An important book has just been published in the United States by a researcher, Batya Ungar-Sargon, whohascrisscrossedtheUnitedStatestounderstand how the working class lives out its realities. She concludes that the elites have betrayed the working class.Afriendofmine,who lives in theUnitedStates, draws the followingverypertinent conclusions. The Democratic Party has ceased to be of the wor- king class and turned to the college-educated elites. Offshoring manufacturing jobs, welcoming wage- reducingmass immigration, and focusingon issues such as climate change have alienated working- class voters. Working-classvotersofallracesareincreasinglysup- portingRepublicansandTrump,convincedthatthey are better for the economy and jobs. Polls show that support for Trump is growingamongHispanics and blacks.TheideathatTrumpvotersareprimarilymoti- vated by racial resentment seems inaccurate. Many working-class Americans feel that the "American Dream" is out of reach, no matter how hard they work. Stagnant wages, unaffordable housing, and decliningunionshavemade a stablemiddle-class life unattainable for thosewithout a collegedegree. They want dignity throughwork, notwelfare. Massimmigrationisoneofthemainconcernsofwor- king-class Americans, who feel it is driving down wages andmaking it harder tomake a decent living. Concerns about the economic impact of immigration are dismissed as racist, leading to frustration. MostAmericans holdmoderate views on polarizing cultural issues like abortion, but the parties have moved to the extremes. Either party can seize the opportunity of a multi-racial working-class coalition by adopting populist positions on the economy, immigration,andhealthcarewhileavoidingextremes on social issues. Trump seems to be moving in this direction. The socio-economic and cultural divide between col- lege-educatedelitesandtheworkingclassnowseems moresignificantthanthetraditionaldivisionsbetween right and left, blurringpolitical coalitions. Ithinktheseobservationsarecorrect.AsRabelaissaid, half the world doesn't knowhow the other half lives (probablynotviceversa).Americanneoliberalismwas a mirage for people with low incomes. It's a system that has wrecked this country and, without taking any shortcuts, led toTrump andhis attempted coup. And theworst is yet to come. United States: from the reverse wealth trickle down to the political polarization

RkJQdWJsaXNoZXIy Nzk5MDI=