Portugal is confident it will exit its bailout program on May 17 but the economic recovery still has a way to go, the Portuguese secretary of state for European Affairs told CNBC.
“We’re very confident we can exit the program,” Bruno Maçães told CNBC Europe’s “Squawk Box.” His country was not, however, a poster child for austerity, he said.
“It has been a very difficult process and in fact, I’m not sure we want to talk about ‘success’ – unemployment is still very high and people have suffered a lot from the process but we did what was necessary and so the country came together to do what was necessary.”
Maçães said he and the government were confident that Portugal would exit its bailout program on May 17, but said the exact conditions of its exit from its 78 billion euro ($106.6 billion) bailout program were unknown.
“It’s important to wait for news about growth in 2014 which we’ll get in a few months or now and to see if our economic recovery is sustainable and sustained if not.”
Maçães’ comments come as Portugal – one of the peripheral euro zone countries hardest hit by the region’s debt crisis – strives to prove it no longer needs international financial assistance.
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