"I think that the second mandate will be more difficult if it is given to me by the Portuguese," said the head of state and presidential candidate, in an interview with TVI, stating that he did not know when the Covid-19 pandemic would end and how long the economic and social crisis would last.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa argued that "the longer all this goes on, the greater the inequality among the Portuguese", pointing out that "this is a factor that is getting worse".

Asked whether he thought there might be early parliamentary elections next year, he replied: "No, that will not happen".

He pointed out that the state budget for 2021 had been approved, that Portugal would hold the presidency of the European Union in the first half of the year and that local elections would follow.

"And then there is the internal debate within the parties for the end of the mandate of many leaders. This means that no crisis is desirable and predictable in 2021", he concluded.