Portugal’s leaders have been trying to quash persistent talk that the country is going to need an international bailout along the same lines as Greece and Ireland.
Prime Minister Jose Socrates – flanked by his finance minister – said Portugal will not ask for any financial help be cause it does not need it.
Socrates added Lisbon has beaten its goal for reducing last year’s budget deficit: “The country is doing its work and it is doing it well. This deficit reduction is possibly the first result that the country is presenting to stimulate the confidence of the international markets, confidence in how our economy is financed.”
However a member of Portugal’s central bank board – Teodora Cardoso – has said it would be better to accept outside help rather than go through a “brutal” financial adjustment that many economist fear could push Portugal back into recession.
Meanwhile there was some good news on the region’s debt crisis as Japan said it plans to buy euro zone bonds to bolster confidence.
Tokyo is considering buying about 20 percent of euro zone bonds to be jointly issued later this month to raise funds to support Ireland, using euros in its foreign reserves, Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda told a news conference.