Costa admits that “it has been tough” to govern, but leaves a promise for the PRR

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José Sena Goulão / Lusa

The Prime Minister, António Costa

The PS secretary general admitted this Thursday that “has been hard” to manage the country in a pandemic situation for more than a year, but he assured redoubled spirit and the strength to triple for the execution of the Execution and Resilience Plan (PRR) .

At the end of the first day of the PS parliamentary days, which take place in Caminha (Viana do Castelo), António Costa he took stock of more than half an hour of the first half of the legislature, in anticipation of the debate on the state of the nation that takes place next Wednesday.

In the end, he focused on the challenges for the future, and pointed his speech to the implementation of the PRR, after being the first to deliver it in Brussels.

“This RRP did not fall from the sky, it was born from the common will of the Europeans, but also from the struggle of many”, he said, recalling the times when he walked between “Budapest and The Hague” to overcome the blockades in the EU to the “biggest plan since the Marshall Plan to respond to an economic crisis”. It was because of this effort that Portugal “wanted to be the first” to present the PRR, he said, cited by the Observer.

In this sense, he left a definite promise: “let’s be the best to implement the PRR, we are going to save our companies, we are going to create more and better jobs”, he said.

Before many of the 108 deputies of the socialist bench, António Costa conveyed the message that he says he leaves to the Portuguese who approach him in the street, as well as to the “sympathetic” who wish him “strength” to resist, as to those who say they would not like to be in your skin.

“To all these I want to say the following: it’s been hard, there is, but it is a fight and a hardness that does not take away our strength, does not take away our spirit. On the contrary, they only double our spirits, only triple our strength”.

The rest of the speech was devoted to the “four marks” that the prime minister says define his government.

First, the responsiveness of the NHS and the effort to comply with the vaccination plan – with a “very special thank you” to Vice Admiral Gouveia e Melo.

Then, the PS secretary general, who spoke mainly as prime minister, focused on how the Government responded to this economic crisis, avoiding austerity and differing from the right.

He also underlined the consequences of this management, which, according to Costa, resulted in good indicators of the unemployment rate.

Finally, I wanted to emphasize the focus maintained, despite all this, on the challenges that I had outlined at the beginning of the previous legislature, with regard to the fight against climate change and the inequalities to the digital transition.

Costa did not forget to point out the fact that Portugal is “at the top of vaccination in EU countries”, and that it has reached the “10 million vaccines” in the last week, with “70% of the adult population at least with the first dose, and 88% of those over 65 fully vaccinated.”

The PS parliamentary days continue this morning with visits to a Vaccination Center in Seixas, Caminha and to the Doureca automobile component factories in Paredes de Coura and Tintex textiles in Vila Nova de Cerveira. They end with the intervention of the President of the Parliamentary Group Ana Catarina Mendes.