Portugal recovery is a ‘success story’ - European Mechanism

in News · 15-11-2019 01:00:00 · 3 Comments

The Director of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) considered the recovery of Portugal’s economic situation to be a success story.

“Portugal is a success story. It is one of our five success stories [together with Ireland, Spain, Greece and Cyprus],” the director of the ESM said.

Responding to a question from Lusa at a meeting with correspondent journalists in Brussels at the ESM headquarters in Luxembourg, Klaus Regling recalled that Portugal was able to leave the assistance programme three years after the start.

“A few years later, the positive effects of the reforms implemented are notorious,” he stressed in his response to Lusa, adding that Portugal now has, for the first time in 50 years, a balanced budget and high growth, above the average for the eurozone.

“And unemployment levels continue to fall, which are now below those recorded before the crisis,” he said.

According to Klaus Regling, the problem was that the results did not come out right away.

“The pace [of economic growth] was slow during the programme and the population sometimes did not like the measures implemented, which is normal because sometimes these adjustments are painful because they include a reduction in wages and cuts in pensions. They also cover structural reforms, and when that happens, people are usually not very happy,” the director said.

Portugal was under financial assistance as part of a macroeconomic adjustment programme between 2011 and 2014.

Despite acknowledging the very positive situation of the Portuguese economy, Klaus Regling pointed out that one area where there is work to be done is that of NPLs (non-performing loans).

“In Portugal, the NPLs are above the European average, but still much lower than a few years ago,” he said.

He added that they have been going down year after year and, therefore, he is confident that this will continue to happen.


Thank you for your down to earth comment, Pedro. I'm English but live in Portugal, and I'm now a proud Portuguese citizen. The economy here is improving slowly, but the idea that this is a success is not true. I dearly want the EU project to work but we must be honest. We can't follow formulas and assume they have been successful. We have to face reality and act upon it. This is not impossible - in fact, it's essential if Europe is to survive.

By Philip Tootill from Porto on 16-11-2019 12:40

Totally agree

By Edwin Heyse from Algarve on 15-11-2019 07:08

What ridiculous story. So all countries hit by loan payment failure during the the economic crisis are now success stories. Do you know what makes them a success really? Its the blantly obvious failure of the austrity policies. Economy grows and people thrive, why is that a surprise or measure of success? People do it, people thrive, thats human nature. The success of government body is, in my mind, measure by how little they prevent his people to thrive. So what they call 'success stories' was essentially discarding all that austerity tiranny from Europes wealthy people. That stops everything. Everyone is impacient, or insecure, so there is no investment. The best thing a government can do for an economy is to not get in its way. Governemnt is a reffeere, only comming to play when needed. So Portugal should really be viewed a tragedy (I live here but guess the same can be said for all PIGS). And what a tragedy, I saw my people die and go live on the streets, is that a success? That is a massive failure. The success is the people

By Pedro Rodrigues from Lisbon on 15-11-2019 04:04
Interactive Topics, send us your comments/opinion on this article.

Please note that The Portugal News may use selected comments in the printed edition of the newspaper.