Brazil's Bolsonaro urges lower house to block public sector pay rise

By Ricardo Brito and Anthony Boadle BRASILIA (Reuters) - Brazilian far-right President Jair Bolsonaro faces a crucial test of his newly-built support base in Congress on Thursday afternoon when the lower chamber will vote on whether to uphold or overturn his veto on a public sector pay rise. The government's leaders in Congress said they expect the veto will be approved. Lower house speaker Rodrigo Maia said he was working to get it passed for the good of Brazil at a time of increased public spending due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Reuters August 21, 2020 00:11:36 IST
Brazil's Bolsonaro urges lower house to block public sector pay rise

Brazils Bolsonaro urges lower house to block public sector pay rise

By Ricardo Brito and Anthony Boadle

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Brazilian far-right President Jair Bolsonaro faces a crucial test of his newly-built support base in Congress on Thursday afternoon when the lower chamber will vote on whether to uphold or overturn his veto on a public sector pay rise.

The government's leaders in Congress said they expect the veto will be approved. Lower house speaker Rodrigo Maia said he was working to get it passed for the good of Brazil at a time of increased public spending due to the coronavirus pandemic.

On Wednesday, the Senate decided to overturn a presidential veto blocking higher spending on civil servants' salaries, in a move that could increase public expenditure by billions of reais.

"I cannot govern this country if the lower house keeps the decision to overturn the veto. It would be impossible to govern Brazil," Bolsonaro said outside the Alvorada Palace, the president's official residence, estimating the cost of the pay hikes at 120 billion reais ($21.17 billion) for the treasury.

Economy Minister Paulo Guedes called the Senate decision a "disaster" and a "crime."

Amid fiscal concerns, the Brazilian real continued a downward trend against the U.S. dollar, weakening roughly 2% before recovering to 5.62 reais. The stock exchange index was down 0.8%.

Chief government whip in the upper chamber, Senator Fernando Bezerra, said the veto failed to muster support after an agreement with the country's governors on disbursing 60 billion reais of aid to states and local authorities fell through.

Bezerra told Reuters that Bolsonaro will announce on Tuesday the extension of a program of emergency payments to low-paid and informal workers. The program has injected funds into the economy that have improved recovery prospects.

The extension will not go to the end of the year and will be less than the 600 reais per month paid out until now.

(Writing by Carolina Mandl and Anthony Boadle; Editing by Marguerita Choy and Alistair Bell)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.