Portugal has made progress but “there’s still a lot to do,” warns Trichet

  • ECO News
  • 15 November 2019

In Lisbon, the former president of the ECB praised the progress of the Portuguese economy and even spoke of growth above the euro average, but warned that there is still much to do.

The former President of the European Central Bank, Jean-Claude Trichet, said on Friday that Portugal had made “encouraging” progress in very difficult circumstances, but warned that “much remains to be done”, and some of that work is difficult. The main challenge for the Portuguese economy is to increase productivity and growth potential.

“Portugal is one of the success stories we can talk about. Portugal was very much affected during the crisis,” said the Frenchman, on the sidelines of a conference promoted by the Bank of Portugal in Lisbon, and said that despite “very difficult circumstances” he made encouraging progress.

“The progress that has been made is encouraging. The latest quarterly growth figures are reasonably higher than the euro area average. But there is still a lot of hard work to be done,” he said.

Asked what the priorities for the Portuguese economy should be, the former head of the ECB, Mario Draghi’s predecessor, argued that “Portugal’s biggest challenge is to increase productivity growth,” and, as a result, to increase the growth potential of the Portuguese economy.

Jean-Claude Trichet, however, reinforced the warning he had already given: ‘There is still much to be done’.