Horta Osório says Portugal’s income is “manifestly insufficient”

Manager António Horta Osório says Portugal is “lagging behind” Europe in terms of competitiveness and that average income is “manifestly insufficient”.

In an interview with Público, the banker asks why “we are satisfied with an average income of € 1,100 or € 1,200” when in Spain the income is “50% higher and in Ireland three times higher. We earn three times more on average than the Portuguese?”

For the manager, this is a scenario due to a lack of “ambition” in Portugal, because “as a country we have to do better” given that “the only place where success comes before work is a dictionary.”

To overcome the lack of ambition, “conditions should be created for investment in top industries,” Horta Osório argues, because they create “more exports and innovation”. The banker also tells Público that resources “must be directed mainly to the private sector” and that the state has an “important role to play in regulating and ensuring that no abuses or externalities occur”. And then, continues Horta Osório, “the conditions for tax and investment support must be guided in the sense of seeing which country has comparative advantages.”

The banker – who refused to speak in an interview with Credit Suisse – stresses that if nothing is done, “it will continue to happen, that is, instead of approaching the EU average income, we will resign”.

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