Holidaymakers to Lisbon were surprised to discover dozens of public buildings displaying “sold” signs this week. The “invasion” began with the first banner hung from the balcony of the houses of parliament. It was easy to get there, jubilant protesters explained afterwards. Other buildings, including the Belém Cultural Centre, went on to be visited by the signs – all placed by the Agir political movement, protesting against Portugal’s privatisation programme.
Along with EDP, REN, CTT, Caixa Seguros, ANA and TAP – being officially signed over today – there is the issue of transport companies Carris and the Metro, writes Correio da Manhã, both of which are due to join the list of privatisations designed to satisfy EU creditors.
“Our sovereignty has been sold,” Agir’s site ‘I am not for sale’ proclaims. “The government has sold everything it can for a handful of beans”.
Ironically, the consortium interested in Carris is reported to be Gateway – the same partnership of American-Brazilian airline mogul David Neeleman and Portuguese transport heavyweight Humberto Pedrosa.