The government led by Passos Coelho decided five years ago that Portugal would withdraw from the financial rescue program without resorting to any precautionary program, thus returning autonomously to the markets.
On May 4, 2014, on a Sunday, Pedro Passos Coelho announced in a statement to the country shortly after 8:00 pm, from his official residence in São Bento that the Government had decided in Council of Ministers that Portugal would leave the program of assistance "without recourse to any precautionary program".
"After a thorough consideration of all the pros and cons, we conclude that this is the right choice at the right time. It is the choice that most effectively defends the interests of Portugal and the Portuguese and that best corresponds to their fair expectations, "said the PSD / CDS-PP executive head after an extraordinary meeting of the Council of Ministers.
On that day, the then prime minister said that Portugal could dispense with a precautionary program because the strategy of return to markets and fiscal consolidation had been successful and the country had regained external credibility.
"Our choice is based on the support of our European partners, who unequivocally manifested it in whatever way we choose," Passos Coelho stressed.
The reactions did not wait. The European Commission assured that it would support Portugal in its "sovereign choice", considering that the Portuguese authorities had "carefully assessed all relevant parameters of the country's economic and financial situation" before taking the decision.
The Director-General of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Christine Lagarde, praised Portugal's "strong position" to complete the fiscal consolidation and assured that the institution would "work closely" with the Portuguese authorities to overcome the problems that remained.
The then general secretary of the PS, António José Seguro, stressed that the exit without a precautionary program was the scenario predicted from the beginning of the program, but warned that the Portuguese would have to bear more sacrifices, referring to the announcement of the increase of VAT and Taxa Social One.
The CDS-PP considered it to be a "positive and historic" day for Portugal, while the PSD welcomed Portugal's withdrawal from the aid memorandum without new financial support, criticizing what it called "electoral selfishness" of the PS.
The Bloco de Esquerda classified the advertisement as "a rocket", considering that the only ones to have a "clean exit" in Portugal were the financial markets and the millionaires, while the PCP accused the Government of "hypocrisy and cynicism."
Remember that Portugal asked for financial assistance on April 6, 2011, with José Sócrates as prime minister. A month later, on May 5, the troika, made up of members of the European Commission, the European Central Bank (ECB) and the IMF, presented the program of financial assistance to Portugal worth € 78 million.