Costa admits “mistakes” by the Government and promises more in housing | Government

Costa admits “mistakes” by the Government and promises more in housing | Government
Costa admits “mistakes” by the Government and promises more in housing | Government

The Prime Minister, António Costa, admitted that the Government, in the almost one year since it won the elections, “made mistakes” and “got the hang of it” with regard to the succession of cases that shook the executive and that even led to layoffs. In an interview with RTP, and at a time when the scenario of early elections next to the 2024 Europeans was put on the table, the head of government devalued this possibility and announced that more measures for housing.

“This year, the Government certainly got the hang of it, it made mistakes”, said António Costa, in an interview with RTP. The Prime Minister’s interview takes place on the occasion of one year since the legislative elections that gave the PS an absolute majority.

Despite acknowledging the executive’s own contribution to political errors, the head of government defended that “the biggest stumbling block” this year was the war in Ukraine and the consequences for inflation and the lives of the Portuguese. Costa also said that he learned a lot this year, namely that a majority “reinforces scrutiny a lot” and admitted that “perhaps not always” the Government responded promptly.

Asked whether, like the secretary general of the PCP, he considers that there is a “political management of recent court cases”, Costa dismissed that reading. “I don’t make that assessment and I don’t want to believe that it is like that”, he said, thus revealing an understanding of the current political environment different from that presented by the Minister of the Environment, Duarte Cordeiro, who recently asked the Public Prosecution Service to deal with complaints in the which he sees “partisan political” interest.

The recent political crisis has put on the table the possibility that the Government will not reach the end of the legislature. And on Sunday, political analyst and former PSD president Luís Marques Mendes argued that the possibility of an anticipation of going to the polls happening with the 2024 Europeans was more likely.

Costa considers it unlikely. Wanting his party to win the elections for the European Parliament, he tried to lower expectations, in an attempt to condition the reading that can be made of a bad result. “So far only three times has the ruling party won the European elections, and that has never caused a political crisis”, he said, recalling that the “Portuguese said they want stability”.

housing package

In the same interview, the Prime Minister announced that, at the Council of Ministers on 16 February, the Minister for Housing, Marina Gonçalves, “will present a law that is a package with a set of transversal measures”.

And he listed them: “Make more public land available for housing construction, a strong incentive for housing construction by private promoters”, admitting that this can be done through tax benefits, “incentives to place housing on the rental market that are in other use or out of the market, and support young people in renting housing”.

But if in housing, Costa had measures to present, in the fight against inflation he only signaled that, if necessary, there will be solutions for “extra needs”. Earlier, the head of government recalled that several incomes and support were increased at the beginning of this year and with the agreement incomes will continue to increase. In other words, the signs are that 2023 will no longer be like in 2022, when the Government announced, at various times, extraordinary direct aid, namely to the most vulnerable.

Also because, Costa sees signs of growth – the data for 2022 should be “above initial forecasts”, he said – and does not see concerns in the labor market, except the lack of labor in some sectors.

With regard to teachers, Costa recalled that negotiations are still ongoing, but challenged the various measures already presented by the Government and which have not yet convinced that professional class. In this field, he was cautious, not least because “everything that is decided for teachers is unlikely to apply to other careers”.

The article is in Portuguese

Tags: Costa admits mistakes Government promises housing Government

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