Portugal’s Constitutional Court has rejected four of the nine austerity measures drawn up by the government. The total austerity budget amounts to around 5 billion euros and the measures thrown out would cut off roughly 900 million euros in revenues and savings for the state, according to estimates.
But it was initially feared that even more points could be thrown out by the court, derailing the entire budget.
Joao Cantiga Esteves, an economist at Lisbon Technical University gave his view: “Technically speaking, financially speaking, I that everything can be done. Obviously another question is political, definitely that’s a different game, it’s a different ball game, so to speak. But in terms of the budget and the goals that we have with the Troika, I think that we have to do the job, we have some homework to do”.
The 2013 parliamentary budget gave Portugal it’s biggest ever tax hike, while reducing pensions and lowering civil servant salaries.
But citizens took to the street in protest over the measures. And they lay the blame squarely at the door of the Troika as the government has to further tighten this year’s budget deficit by almost another percent on last year against GDP.