Brazil’s Rousseff Criticizes Austerity as Solution for Crisis

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff used a speech in recession-hit Spain to criticize austerity as a means of tackling economic crises.

“Policies that only stress austerity are showing their limitations,” Rousseff told an Ibero-American leaders summit today in the Andalusian city of Cadiz, Spain. “Exaggerated and simultaneous fiscal consolidation in every country is not the best response to the global crisis and could make it worse, leading to worse recession.”

While austerity measures may prevent the possibility of a financial collapse, they don’t necessarily help to convince markets or voters, Rousseff said. She spoke as European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso told reporters in Cadiz that some European countries were facing a “social emergency” and the region’s priority should be to focus on growth.

The euro-area economy has succumbed to a recession for the second time in four years as governments imposed tougher budget cuts and leaders struggled to contain the debt crisis that broke out in October 2009. Gross domestic product in the 17-nation bloc slipped 0.1 percent in the third quarter after a 0.2 percent decline in the previous three months, the European Union’s statistics office in Luxembourg said Nov. 15.

To contact the reporter on this story: Charles Penty in Madrid at cpenty@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Frank Connelly at fconnelly@bloomberg.net

Bloomberg reserves the right to remove comments but is under no obligation to do so, or to explain individual moderation decisions.

Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.