Dombrovskis: “Portugal exceeded the goals set last year”

  • ECO News
  • 24 February 2017

The vice-president of the European Union arrived this Thursday in Portugal and is in Parliament this Friday speaking to deputies. In the Committee on European Affairs, he praised Portugal.

Valdis Dombrovskis commended Portugal for having exceeded the goals set by the European Commission in 2016: “Portugal surpassed the goals set last year”, he stated. Nonetheless, he left some warnings for the upcoming years: both the deficit and public debt must continue decreasing, and for that aim, more structural reforms are needed. Even so, the 2.1% deficit to be confirmed by Statistics Portugal (INE) and Eurostat is Portugal’s main asset in assuring the country leaves the Excessive Deficit Procedure (EDP) in 2017.

After the Country Reports results, the vice-president of the European Commission is coming to Portugal for the seventh time within the European Semester, a mechanism aiming to provide a framework for the coordination of economic and budget policies. Dombrovskis said he awaits the Eurostat results — which should be disclosed in April –, and also the Commission’s Spring forecasts, since they should indicate Portugal will leave the EDP and avoid the corrective measures applied to countries who continue having excessive macro-economic issues or who have governments who don’t implement the EC’s policies.

At issue are also the Portuguese debt interests which have surpassed the 4% threshold several times this year. Valdis Dombrivskis also pointed to the quantitative easing monetary policy which “will not last forever”, especially because of the pressure set by inflation, which reached 1.8% in the Euro Area.

Dombrovskis points to the goal of a economic growth of 1.6% as an “encouraging sign in the recovery of the Portuguese economy“. Yet, the vice-president believes there are still “excessive unbalances” in Portugal and, therefore, the EC is waiting for the National Reform Programme to be “ambitious” in solving those problems.