Costa reveals what drove the deficit to fall to half – The Economic Journal

Costa reveals what drove the deficit to fall to half - The Economic Journal

Prime Minister António Costa said today that "half of the sustained reduction" of the deficit in Portugal between 2016 and 2017 was achieved as a direct result of policies that stimulate job creation and higher incomes.

"It was not blindly cutting the deficit that we got more growth and better jobs. On the contrary, it was to create jobs and raise incomes that we have lowered the deficit in a sustainable way, "António Costa said at the opening session of a high-level conference promoted by the International Labor Organization (ILO) at Palácio Foz in Lisbon .

In his address, António Costa sought to present the social and economic consequences of the strategic political change in the country, after the change of Government in November 2015.

In this context, the Prime Minister emphasized the idea that in his government there is "an awareness that precariousness and low wages are deep problems of the Portuguese labor market".

"If today we have a less unequal country and with better public accounts than in 2015, much is due to the contribution of the approximately 320 thousand jobs created and the salary increase that has been achieved. By 2016, 80,000 people were liberated from poverty and, between 2016 and 2017, we know that the salary range has been reduced, promoting equality, "said António Costa.

However, this evolution in employment, according to António Costa, had an "impact on public accounts".

"Between 448 million euros in unemployment subsidies we saved and another 1,600 million euros in Social Security contributions, more and better jobs were responsible for half – yes, half – of the reduction of the deficit in 2016 and 2017" , stressed the leader of the executive.

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