Throughout the months of April and May IPP will contribute to the public discussion on the Stability Programme and the National Reform Programme, two key documents of the “European Semester”.

The “European Semester” is a process of political dialogue between the European Commission and the member states which consists in an exchange of drafts, programmes and recommendations regarding the implementation of public policies and institutional reforms. The month of April is particularly relevant in this dialogue, as it is during this month that the EU member states are required to submit two key documents: the Stability Programme and National Reform Programme.

The Stability Programme is the main document on fiscal policy and the sustainability of public finances in the medium term. The budgetary targets set each year in this document, in conjunction with macroeconomic forecasts that underlie them, are used by the European Commission staff when assessing the compliance of EU member states with the main medium-term fiscal rules.

On the other hand, the National Reform Programme is broader in its scope and should reflect a strategic vision for public policy and institutional reform. According to the presentation made by the Portuguese Government, the Portuguese National Reform Programme, which will be known later this month, will be organized around six main pillars:

1. Qualifications
2. Innovation
3. Territory
4. Modernising Government
5. Firm recapitalisation
6. Social Cohesion

Over the coming weeks we will publish original works by experts on these areas in order to actively contribute to the public debate over such relevant documents to the national political strategy of the next few years.

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