António Costa: “In 2016 Portugal will begin to end austerity”


An article from Entorno Intelligente (translation by CPNN)

The Prime Minister of Portugal said that the first measures of his government this year will begin to end the country impoverishment and social decline due to the policy of austerity. In a letter published in the Portuguese newspaper Diário de Notícias (DN), Costa cited the almost total elimination of the special tax for workers, the gradual return of the cuts applied to government officials and an increase of 5% in the minimum wage. “With these measures, approved in the first 20 days of government, we seek to disrupt the impoverishment and social regression that have been imposed by the austerity policies.”

António Costa

Between 2011 and 2015, Portugal was ruled by the center-right party under Pedro Passos Coelho which implemented tough cuts demanded by banks for the ” financial rescue” of Portugal (2011-2014).

We want to “claim a new vision for the country, a vision based on a strong and sustainable economy,” Costa continued. He is the head of government and leader of the moderate Socialist Party (PS).

The PS came to power against all odds after negotiating a post-election alliance in parliament with the Marxist left and the Communists. Their alliance ousted the center-right, which had won the elections on October 4, but without an absolute majority.

Costa mentioned other laws of a social nature adopted during the first month of his mandate: as the possibility of homosexual couples to adopt children or revocation of fees charged to women who seek an abortion.

In his letter, however, he did not allude to the most difficult aspect of his first month in power: the rescue of the bank Banif worth 2.225 million, which was opposed by their leftist partners, but was eventually approved with the abstention by the center-right.

According to the Government. this controversial injection of public funds does not affect the deficit target of 3% of GDP, and it will not be included in the accounts made by the European Commission due to the extraordinary nature of the operation.

(click here for the original version in Spanish.)

Question for this article:

Movements against governmental fiscal austerity, are they part of the global movement for a culture of peace?

Readers’ comments are invited on this question.