In the traditional New Year message, the President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, warned that Portugal enters 2023 forced “to avoid it being worse than 2022”, which “was not the year of the expected turning point”.
He stated that “2023 may become, in the world, in Europe and in Portugal, the most important year until 2026, if not even until 2030”.
“A year on, we know that, in Portugal, despite what we were doing was better than much of Europe, 2022 was not the year of the expected turning point and we enter 2023 forced to avoid it being worse than 2022”, he warned.
If “2022 seemed to be a year of lack of definition, a turning point and hope”, the President of the Republic said that a year later “ the Covid-19 pandemic has not disappeared in some areas of the globe” and “the war has surpassed diplomacy, without certainty as to time and effects."
“A year later, we know that Portugal has held up better than some of Europe in terms of growth, tourism, foreign investment, energy autonomy and the budget deficit, but it has suffered and continues to suffer from rising prices, cuts in income, cuts in real wages, housing interest, the worsening of poverty and social inequalities”, he emphasized.
In the message, recorded at the Portuguese Embassy in Brasilia, whilst Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa was in Brazil for the inauguration of President Lula da Silva, the head of state recalled that a year ago Portugal was on the eve of early legislative elections.
“A year later, we know that the Portuguese chose to give an absolute majority to the party that had ruled for the previous six years, thus no longer depending on old party support, nor on an understanding with the largest opposition party”, he said.
"On the expectation that European funds, added to tourism and foreign investment, already on the rise, would make 2022 the year of the turning point, a year later it is clear that Europe “was forced to to spend more time on the war in Ukraine, on the reaction to dependency, the effect on energy and inflation, than with how to use and control European funds, with the growth of economies, with its internal reforms, and with its global role in the world”.
“A year on, we know that growth in the world did not exist or was insignificant, international trade has not normalised, price rises have skyrocketed, the poverty and inequalities of the war have added to the poverty and inequalities of the pandemic”, he summized.