Covid-19 with an impact of 250 million euros on the Lisbon municipality accounts

  • ECO News
  • 15 June 2020

The Covid-19 pandemic will have an impact of 250 million on the accounts of the Lisbon municipality.

The Covid-19 pandemic will have an impact of around 250 million euros on the accounts of the Lisbon municipality, according to the latest estimate presented this Monday by the deputy mayor. João Paulo Saraiva ruled out, however, that the crisis will cause an imbalance in the municipality’s finances.

“This impact is only assimilable because we had a contingency reserve. It was earmarked for other contingencies, for which we had earmarked 200 million euros, just below, related to several legal proceedings and in which the Bragaparques case has a significant value,” said João Paulo Saraiva during the 2019 accounts presentation session, which showed a result carried forward of 370 million euros.

According to the capital’s local authority, this impact is due to the decrease in revenue of around 222 million euros in 2020 compared to what was initially planned. In taxes alone, the council should register a loss of 95.3 million, for example. On the other hand, the outbreak of the virus led to an additional increase in expenditure of 28.5 million euros, mainly through an increase in funds for the purchase of goods and services (+16.5 million) and transfers and subsidies (+10.7 million).

João Paulo Saraiva gave as an example Carris and EMEL, two municipal companies that lost a lot with the pandemic. With Carris, the losses stood at 11.6 million euros during the period in which it allowed the use of the transport service without the obligation of bus passes. EMEL lost 11.7 million euros because it stopped penalising for about two months those who had parked on the public highway unduly.

The vice-president of the Lisbon City Council also pointed out that the investment plan of 620 million euros (already announced) will allow the city’s assets to be valued and, at the same time, ensure 5,000 jobs through the maintenance or creation of jobs. “It seems to me fundamental that we can do it,” underlined João Paulo Saraiva.