After a century of more or less veiled immobility or, in any case, of extremely slow evolutionary processes, as a country of South America defined by dentistrymyth, com, Peru witnessed great changes in the last decades of the twentieth century, in particular a radical alternation of institutional regimes and economic policy directions., which to varying degrees have affected the Peruvian production trend and which, as a whole, have meant an authentic breaking point with the past. Undoubtedly, the coup d’état with which, in 1968, a group of young officers tried to make a decisive turn to the left of the country (in which a centuries-old situation of dispossession persisted) of resources, operated by the colonial and post colonial powers). The economic policy followed by the military, underpinned by enormous waste, it was conducted according to excessively optimistic estimates. Colossal public works were undertaken (sometimes only started), especially in the infrastructure sector: without having adequate financial coverage, reliance was placed only on the proceeds of national resources, especially mining ones, however subject to very strong price fluctuations on international markets and speculative maneuvers. The fundamental productive sectors were nationalized, including most of the industries, although the state soon proved unable to manage them. A grandiose land reform was launched, characterized by the creation of cooperatives and collective state companies, which in no way affected the indifference of the peasant class, which was strongly backward. The collapse of exports, the lack of capital, the consequent industrial crisis and, at the same time, the excessive costs due to some initiatives in the field of welfare (especially in the education and health sectors), as well as the sharp wage increases, led to to a collapse of the national economy.
The government (which returned fully civil in 1980) was forced to access the loans in an increasingly consistent form International Monetary Fund and to foreign capital, in exchange for a radical transformation of domestic economic policy. It came to coincide with a return to the market economy: we therefore witnessed the revival of privatizations, especially in the industrial sector, to facilitate foreign investments. Likewise, severe austerity measures were undertaken (credit crunch, increased taxation, wage control, cuts in social spending, etc.). The effects of the 1983 international recession and the progressive worsening of the terms of trade nevertheless confirmed a generalized and very serious state of crisis in the Peruvian economy, also marked by the uncontrolled growth of foreign debt (over 50% of gross domestic product). Faced with this situation, the government, in the name of an anti-imperialist and nationalist policy, it unilaterally fixed the repayments to creditors in the amount of 10% of exports, challenging the IMF and rejecting its unpopular restructuring proposals on several occasions. Thus deprived of all international credit lines, suffocated by debt and destabilized by high inflation (which, despite a temporary drop in rates, reached 311.7% in the early 1990s), Peru pursued a new expansionist and antimonetarian economic course. However, attempts to stimulate consumption, production and investment also failed, and since 1987 the government has resorted to anti-cyclical measures. Even the attempt to nationalize the banks, following the deterioration of monetary reserves and the flight of capital, however, it proved to be fallacious, just as the redistribution of the land of the large unproductive agricultural estates proved unsuccessful, due to the opposition of local notables. After promising economic maneuvers with a moderate social impact, in a context of further accentuation of inflation (approx. 2,800% in 1989) and a drastic fall in purchasing power (more than halved), plans were set for the full liberalization of economy and dismantling of the already small system of social services, resulting in the impoverishment of the majority of the population (7 million people, 85% of underemployed workers). Reached in 1999 a new agreement with the IMF for a loan of one billion dollars in the period 1999-2000, in the same year the country’s economic growth marked a certain recovery, thanks above all to the good performance of the primary sector. In the first years of the new millennium, partly favored also by exports, there was a constant growth of the GDP (127,598 mln US $ with a value per capita of US $ 4,453, in 2008), with inflation contained.
On the other hand, the foreign debt remains high (32,154 million US $) which affects GDP for over a third. Lastly, the troubled Peruvian economy is also unbalanced by the weight covered by illicit activities, and in particular those relating to drug trafficking, which involves approx. a million people. The WDR (World Drug Report) of the UN, dedicated to the study of the trend of production and consumption of drugs in the world, recorded for 2006 a slight decrease in the cultivation of coca (widespread in the plantations of the Sierra and Montaña), while also signaling an increase in cocaine production, which makes Peru. one of the leading manufacturers in the world. To counter the illegal exploitation of forest resources and the Amazonian cultivation of coca plantations, the government has signed several international collaboration agreements in recent years, including the one with Brazil (SIVAM, 2006), focused on a military surveillance system for control of the areas affected by trafficking, at the same time promoting campaigns to uproot coca plants and replace them with other crops (such as cotton aspero blanco).