BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Business  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
E-Commerce
Economy
Market Data
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Tuesday, 18 February, 2003, 01:42 GMT
Lula makes plea for reform
President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva
Lula has huge support after last year's elections

Brazil's newly-installed president, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has made an impassioned appeal to pass reforms seen as vital for the revival of South America's largest economy.

Speaking at the opening of the country's Congress, he talked about a great historic opportunity to bring change.

It is not normal for the Brazilian president to turn up in person for the opening session of Congress after the summer recess.

But Lula, as the new president is known, came to deliver the government's wish list of reforms, seen as indispensable by most analysts if South America's largest economy is to flourish.

Anomalies

In first place, are the country's pension and tax systems.

Many public employees, like judges, professors and military officers, get much bigger pensions than their final salaries, which can be passed on to their families if they die.

Ordinary workers, who provide the bulk of the contributions, on the other hand, get little more than the minimum wage.

The result is a massive and growing deficit which is threatening to bankrupt the state.

There are similar anomalies in the tax system.

The new Brazilian president urged Congress to take advantage of, what he called, the enormous political capital of the moment, with rare consensus between rich and poor for the need for reform.

The new president enjoys an unprecedented range of support in Brazil, after a landslide victory in elections at the end of last year.

Ironically, the reforms are largely inherited from the last government which was unable to pass them because of opposition from Lula's Workers' Party.

Lula stands a much better chance because the parties now in opposition have traditionally supported the reforms.


Key stories

Profiles

VOTERS' VOICES

INTERACTIVE JOURNEY

WORLD SERVICE

TALKING POINT
See also:

31 Jan 03 | Business
30 Jan 03 | Americas
02 Jan 03 | Business
30 Dec 02 | Business
27 Dec 02 | Business
19 Dec 02 | Business
10 Dec 02 | Business
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Business stories are at the foot of the page.


 E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Business stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes