The PSD leader said on Tuesday he had a "very, very critical" look at Banco de Portugal's performance over time, considering that if it had been "more independent" of the system it would have avoided some problems in the financial system.
At a debate lunch at the Portuguese Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Lisbon, Rui Rio made an initial speech in which he reiterated some priorities of the PSD's electoral program, such as the economy, environment, health and structural reforms, with one of the vices of this institution. , former CDS-PP leader Paulo Portas, in attendance and by his side at the table of honor.
At the question stage, he was questioned by Miguel Horta e Costa, another deputy of the Chamber of Commerce, about Banco de Portugal (BdP).
“Obviously no Portuguese can see Banco de Portugal's performance in recent years – in a very broad sense, not in the last two or three years – with good eyes of course. If BdP had been aware, if it had intervened, if BdP had been more independent of the system itself, we would never have gotten to the situation that we have reached in the most diverse banks, not to mention just BES, ”said Rio.
The Social Democratic leader recalled the resolution made in 2014 by the BdP – when former PSD leader Pedro Passos Coelho and Governor Carlos Costa were still in office – which resulted in the separation of the Espírito Santo Group and Banco Espírito Holy in 2014.
“Statements made about GES and BES show that BdP was not well aware of the problem when it says that GES was bad and BES was well – at the time even the President of the Republic took [Cavaco Silva] to make this statement – demonstrates lack of knowledge ”, considered Rio.
"I had to be very cautious … otherwise I would deceive people, as many have deceived, who lost even more money," he said, justifying his "very, very critical" look at the "various administrations" of the central bank. .
At a luncheon before a few dozen businessmen – from the PSD were attended by the secretary general, José Silvano, and the director of the Maló de Abreu board -, Rio was asked if he admitted to making a 'contraption' on the right and repeated what he said about the theme, rejecting the term but admitting an understanding with the CDS-PP.
“A contraption is a bad thing that, in the case of the left, was fixed just to have a parliamentary majority and didn't have a strategic program for Portugal, so they called it a contraption (…) On the right, there can never be a contraption in which I be the leader, because on the right it has to be a consistent and strategic link, ”he said.
With the caveat, Rio said not only admit, but support, the idea of a possible understanding on the right, as long as it is to “add 116 deputies with strategic sense”.
Faced with an audience of businessmen, Rio defended that to be able to fulfill PSD's promise of “better jobs and better salaries”, it is necessary to “do the opposite” of what has happened in the last four years ”of PS government supported by a left majority, betting more in exports than in private consumption.
In health, he reiterated the idea that “running a hospital is like running a business” – unlike hospitals 'producing' health services – and promised priority to the environment, 'even if it doesn't give big votes'.
On structural reforms, he reiterated that they must be made "as broadly as possible". "If we really want to change the political system or reform justice there is no party, even if it has an absolute majority, that one day can do it," he argued, ensuring that the PSD will always "lead" this movement in favor of reforms, whether whatever the outcome of the October 6 legislatures.
At the end of the lunch, questioned by the journalists as to why apparently cannot be understood with the PS regarding transport – after criticism from the Prime Minister, António Costa, in recent days to the PSD's options in the railway area and the future airport of Lisbon – Rio considered that these are not structural reforms but structural investments.
“When we talk about transport, for example, we are saying if there is more or less investment or if the train is moving a little faster or a little slower,” he said.
The PSD leader repeated that in the PSD program, "no one is talking about TGV". “TGV applied to Portugal would mean doing Porto-Lisbon in 1 hour and 15 minutes, that's not what we are talking about. We are talking about high speed trains, which give more than 200 km per hour, we are not talking about trains that go at 300 and such kilometers per hour, ”he said.