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the Troika

The Spanish state versus Catalonia: a decisive battle has begun

 

 People wave pro-independence flags as they gather outside the Parliament of Catalonia in Barcelona. Read more on Portugal.

Portugal: 'Europe is very concerned' as new gov't likely short-lived

 Portuguese Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho (front) and Deputy minister Paulo Portas leave a press meeting after talks with Socialist party (PS) leader Antonio Costa in Lisbon, October 13. Read more about Portugal.


By Dick Nichols

The incoming government of Portugal will most probably prove to be the briefest in modern Portuguese history.

It is headed by conservative Social Democratic Party (PSD) leader Pedro Passos Coelho, whom Portuguese president Cavaco Silva appointed on October 22 to repeat as prime minister. Passos Coelho has already overseen the application of the 2011 “bail-out” memorandum applied to Portugal by the Troika (European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund). The PSD will again be joined by the neoliberal Democratic and Social Centre-People's Party (CDS-PP), with whom it ran in the October 4 legislative election as the Portugal Ahead coalition.

Portuguese elections: surge in Left Bloc support puts Socialist Party on the spot

 

 Left Bloc activists. Read more about Portugal here.

 

By Dick Nichols

Will Portugal finally see the end of austerity as administered for four years by the right-wing coalition of the Social-Democratic Party (PSD) and Democratic and Social Centre—People's Party (CDS-PP)?

In the country's October 4 elections this governing alliance, running for the first time as a single ticket called Portugal Ahead (except on the Azores), won the elections, but with only 38.4 % of the vote (down from 50.4% at the 2011 national election). Of the 5.4 million Portuguese who voted, 739,000 turned their back on the outgoing government, leaving it with only 107 seats in the 230-seat parliament (down 25).

As a result, the PSD-CSD alliance,  which boasted during the election campaign of being the most reliable tool of the Troika (European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund), could even lose government.

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