Bankruptcies increase

Government tax receipts and national insurance contributions are suffering from the high number of companies declaring bankruptcy.

The number for the first quarter reached 1,192 last week, eight per cent more than between January and the middle of April in 2009.

Raul Gonzalez, President of the Portuguese Association of Insolvency Administrators, Associação de Gestores e Liquidatários Judiciais e Administradores da Insolvência (APGS), highlighted the fact that between 2004 and 2009 the budget for the Salary Guarantee Fund had quadrupled, from 22 to 81 million euros.

To this burden were added increased expenses for companies paying unemployment benefit and national insurance contributions as well as legal costs.

Given these costs, Gonzalez argued in an interview with Portuguese news agency Lusa that the State should do more to help companies recover from the economic crisis.

And because state coffers are so low in tax and national insurance contributions the State too is having difficulty on paying its bills on time to service suppliers.