Troika dodges responsibility

Troika is trying to shirk its responsibilities regarding Portugal’s economic plight and is changing its stance regarding the country’s ability to implement a €4.7 billion cut, said ex-PSD leader Marques Mendes in his weekly political comment on Portuguese TV station SIC.

The former head of the social-democratic party believes the Troika has no reason to fear that the recent deal between the government and teachers will affect the State Reform because the Minister of Education did not accept all demands, especially the most crucial (the Ministry of Science and Education Nuno Crato promised the unions that teachers would not be placed more than 60km from their residence, after a long negotiation process on June 24).

However, Mendes said that if the proposals for the State Reform are rejected by the Constitutional Court a political crisis may ensue.

“Only the Constitutional Court’s actions could lead to the fall of the government,” he said, and added that rejection of any important measure may force Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho to discontinue in office.

Mendes also announced that corporate income tax (IRC) will be subject to reform and it is planned it will be reduced from the current 31.5% to around 20% by 2018, in line with European Commission requirements.

“It is a significant reduction, which will be accomplished gradually throughout the coming five years,” he said, and explained that the decrease will be gradual in order to soften the impact of the loss of income, but it will signify an important boost for investment.