Portugal Approves Amended Budget After Banif Sale to Santanderby
Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa succeeded on Wednesday in getting parliament to approve changes to the 2015 budget that will help clear the way for Banco Santander SA to take control of Portuguese lender Banif-Banco Internacional do Funchal SA’s operations.
The Socialist government’s amended budget was changed to include a 2.26-billion-euro ($2.5 billion) cash injection into Banif. Portugal split Banif in two and agreed to sell some assets to Banco Santander last week for 150 million euros.
"If the amended budget is rejected, that implies the reversal of the deal," Finance Minister Mario Centeno said at a parliamentary hearing Tuesday.
Costa’s administration was unable to get the support of the Communists, the Greens and the Left Bloc, the three parties that helped him come to power last month voted against the modified budget. However, it was able to approve the changes to the document with the help of the main opposition Social Democratic Party, which abstained.