Speaking in the debate on general policy with the prime minister, in Parliament, Ana Catarina Mendes made a speech in which she called for “responsibility from all political actors” in response to the current health crisis and sought to convey a message of confidence in the future, presenting a series of economic indicators on Portugal’s development over the last six months.

“The available data shows that the Portuguese economy beat all forecasts in the third quarter of last year and continued to perform above forecasts in the fourth quarter,” she said.

According to Ana Catarina Mendes, “if there is no economy without health, there will also be no future without employment and savings”.

“The Portuguese economy was expected to fall sharply in 2020, that was inevitable, but I want to highlight two areas that are preparing for the future: employment, which has proved resilient, with unemployment falling since August; and investment, which has recorded one of the best performances in the euro area and is expected to grow in the second half of the year,” she said.

For the president of the Parliamentary Group of the Portuguese Socialist Party, even in a situation of crisis, the Portuguese economy “continues to surprise on the positive side”.

In his reply, the Prime Minister did not comment on data relating to the evolution of the Portuguese economy over the last year, preferring instead to stress the warning that the fight against Covid-19 “is set to last for many months”, despite the fact that the vaccination process is already underway.

António Costa again estimated that the country lost around €15 billion in production last year, with aid reaching €22 billion.

“Of course, it has not arrived. We cannot say that it is enough to support 20 percent of a restaurant’s loss in turnover,” he noted.

So, according to the Prime Minister, “there can be no illusions, because the country will not come out of this pandemic without wounds and scars.”

“We will have wounds and scars, but there is one thing we have to focus on: we will really get out of this crisis, heal the wounds and assimilate the scars. It may take time, but it’s the result we’ll get”, he promised.