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Horta ,  November 13, 2017

Budget for 2018 marks beginning of new development cycle in the Azores

The Vice-President of the Government stated in Horta that the proposed Regional Budget for next year marks the "beginning of a new cycle of development" in the Azores.
"This development phase aims to consolidate the economic growth and recovery in the Region as well as employment creation, namely the creation of better jobs, i.e., skilled, stable and better paid jobs," said Sérgio Ávila. He spoke after being heard at the Committee on Economic Affairs of the Legislative Assembly.
Moreover, the government official stressed that the 2018 Budget also intends to "reinforce the investment in people, especially in the sectors of education and health. We are increasingly directing our investment not only to infrastructures but also to support policies."
For the Vice-President, this investment ensures budget stability and, thus, “reinforces confidence among economic agents.”
Sérgio Ávila stressed that the trust factor "also contributes to the economic growth we are experiencing in the Azores and to the economic recovery that has been consolidated with positive effects on employment, as it was revealed last week."
The National Statistics Institute revealed that the employed population in the Azores in the third quarter of this year is highest since 2008 and the unemployment rate fell to 8.2 percent. The latter is lower than the national average and the lowest registered in almost seven years in the Region.
The Vice-President also pointed out that, despite the reduction in Community funds, the Budget for 2018 remains the same as in the previous year, i.e., the current year. It reflects the increase of the Region's own revenue, the reduction in dependence on external factors and, as he pointed out, a high rate of implementation of Community funds.
The Azores have "the highest execution rate in the country" in terms of projects planned for the seven years of the current community framework, said Sérgio Ávila. According to him, the Region has not lost community funds.
"The investments have already been made, particularly in the area of education and welfare. The infrastructures planned for the next seven years registered an excellent level of implementation. Now, there is a reduction in investment as several works were already carried out," said the government official.
With regard to career progression, Sérgio Ávila clarified that the provisions of the Regional Budget "are in line with the rules to be approved in the State Budget for 2018 and they will be applied directly to the Regional Public Administration."
The Regional Budget for next year provides for an overall allocation of 1,292 million Euros: 503 million Euros of direct investment and 753 million Euros of global investment.


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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