The coming Portuguese general election raises themes of austerity, reform and growth that Europe has become all too familiar with in recent years. From an EU perspective the drama is much less intense than the Greek election, but its outcome will be keenly watched in Brussels and EU member states struggling with similar issues.
The country has emerged from an international bailout programme that brought plenty of pain in cutbacks and job losses. The harsh domestic conditions also provoked mass emigration, an exodus that is still continuing today.
Will the centre-right coalition suffer a ballot box backlash or will voters give the country’s political leadership more time to get things right? That’s the big question Chris Burns and his guests discuss in this edition of The Network. Joining Chris in the studio at the European Parliament are:
Paulo Rangel, Vice Chair of the centre-right European People’s Party and a member of Portugal’s governing Social Democrats.
Marisa Matias, a member of the European United Left – Nordic Green Left in the parliament, and of the Left Bloc in Portugal.
Pascale Joannin, head of the Robert Schuman Foundation, a think tank based in Brussels and Paris.
Click on the video to see the debate in full