Portugal's Communist Party, the smallest in parliament, said on Monday it planned to table a no confidence vote in the minority Socialist government, whose austerity programme it said would increase economic injustice.
"The party, responding to a widespread sentiment of protest...will present a no-confidence motion in parliament," Communist leader Jeronimo de Sousa said in a statement.
The Communists, who in an alliance with the Greens have 15 seats, are unlikely to secure the 116 votes they need as the government is supported on the austerity measure by the biggest opposition party, the centre-right Social Democrats (PSD).
The government on Thursday announced a set of new austerity measures, including tax hikes and wage cuts, that deepen and accelerate its previously announced fiscal consolidation plans.
"This is a no-confidence (vote) in the government, but mainly directed at the Socialist Party and the PSD..., an unequivocal condemnation of the measures now imposed and of the additional injustice and inequality they bring," de Sousa said.
The austerity measures are designed to cut the budget deficit to 2.8 percent of gross domestic product in 2013 from last year's highs of 9.4 percent and to soothe investor concerns about Portugal's creditworthiness.
The PSD has committed to approving the bills in parliament to stabilise the country's financial situation and its leader has said he wants to avoid political instability at least while the market turmoil lasts.
Abstention by the PSD would be sufficient for the government to survive the no-confidence motion.
The Communists did not say when the motion would be tabled but the Lusa news agency said it could be done as soon as on Tuesday and voted some time this week.
ReutersLast Mod: 17 Mayıs 2010, 23:27