LISBON, April 15 (Xinhua) -- Portugal's Ministry of Finance has revised down its economic growth rate for 2019 to 1.9 percent in the Stability Program for 2019-2023, highlighting the external context of uncertainty
The new forecast, released in a document here on Monday, represented a decrease of 0.3 percentage points against the 2.2 percent growth rate that the Portuguese government anticipated in its State Budget.
"The Ministry of Finance forecasts real GDP growth of 1.9 percent for 2019, decelerating from the 2.1 percent growth observed in 2018", due to a decrease in the contribution of domestic demand (from 2.8 percentage points in 2018 to 2.1 percentage points in 2019), due to lower expected growth rates for private consumption and public consumption," the document said, which was presented at a time when the International Monetary Fund has revised down global economic growth, including that of Portugal.
In the stability program, the Portuguese government also anticipated an expansion of 1.9 percent of GDP in 2020, 2 percent in 2021 and 2022, while 2.1 percent in 2023.
Despite expecting more modest growth, the government kept its deficit forecast for 2019 unchanged at 0.2 percent, pointing to a surplus in 2020.
Commenting on the stability program, Portugal's President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa said that "we live in an uncertain time, and therefore a stability pact by 2023 must have this in mind. "
At a press conference here to present the program, Portuguese Finance Minister Mario Centeno told reporters that "we have to be prepared for how all the uncertainties are going to be resolved," referring to the Brexit's resolution, global trade tensions and the discussion around multilateralism.