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Portugal announces austerity package
September 30, 2010
Portugal has announced a new package of austerity measures designed to reassure markets that it will meet ambitious deficit-reduction targets and not seek emergency funding in a Greek-style crisis.
The measures include a 5 per cent cut in the public sector wage bill and a 2 percentage point increase in value added tax to 23 per cent, José Sócrates, Portugal’s centre-left prime minister, said on Wednesday.
The package was “absolutely essential to defend the international credibility of our economy”, he said.
Portugal, like Ireland, has seen its cost of borrowing rise to record levels this week amid market concerns that two countries could be forced to seek bail-out loans from the international community, triggering a new eurozone crisis.
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