Brazil is preparing a fresh round of emergency cash transfers to millions of poor, President Jair Bolsonaro said on Monday. I think there will be an extension, Bolsonaro said in an interview with the TV program Brasil Urgente.
The previous program expired 31 December, which helped Bolsonaro rocket in opinion polls, but have since being declining as the pandemic worsens and the number of deaths and contagions climb to the world's second highest behind the US.
We are not going to run away from the issue of emergency aid. A large part of the population is in difficulty, Bolsonaro said, warning that further fiscal stimulus must be done in a responsible manner.
If not, financial markets could be spooked and the Real could weaken to as low as 6 per dollar, Bolsonaro warned. Any package will also take into account investor concerns over the government's fragile finances.
Earlier on Monday, government sources said the proposal is for three monthly installments of 200 reais (US$ 37) aimed at millions of informal workers not already signed up for the Bolsa Familia benefit scheme, at a cost of around 6 billion Reais (US$ 1.1 bln) a month.
Arthur Lira, the newly-elected speaker of the lower house, tweeted on Monday morning that both chambers and the executive branch must draw up a viable program for those who need it most, while always respecting the spending cap.
Senate leader Rodrigo Pacheco told GloboNews he was very optimistic that a package could be put together this week, but also stressed it must be compatible with keeping the public finances under control.
The government's constitutional spending ceiling limits the growth in public spending to the previous year's rate of inflation. Economy Minister Paulo Guedes insists it is the government's fiscal super anchor and must not be breached.
Last year's emergency spending was approved under a state of calamity budget and was not subject to the usual budget rules, which meant the cap was not officially broken.
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I'll believe it when I see it... ;)Feb 10th, 2021 - 09:21 am 0
ImoyaroFeb 17th, 2021 - 02:57 pm 0
I think it will happen alright.......Bolsonaro doesn't have much choice, but is probably glad that Congress will order him to do it....that way, he can reap the benefit of avoiding mass starvation and cannot be blamed if it worsens the public debt.
Not to mention that Bolsonaro's initial and continuing denial of the seriousness of the pandemic, is partially responsible for the never-ending spread of the virus.