Statement PCP Central Committee

Communiqué by the Central Committee of the PCP, June 25-26, 2016

Communiqué by the Central Committee of the PCP, June 25-26, 2016

The Central Committee of the PCP, meeting on June 25 and 26, 2016, analysed the country’s political and social situation and the recent developments in Europe and in the world. The Central Committee of the PCP, highlighting the intense and diverse political intervention of the PCP stresses the positive results achieved in the context of the new phase of national political life and calls for the development, broadening and intensification of the mass struggle. The Central Committee of the PCP assessed the first phase of the preparation of the XX Congress of the PCP, adopted the regulation of its third preparatory phase, which will begin at the end of September, and adopted the criteria to draw the Central Committee list to be elected by the XX Congress.

I - Defend the workers, the people and the Country, fight for Portugal with a future

The international situation - characterized by instability and economic crisis, imperialism’s violent offensive and the development of the crisis in and of the European Union, the most important and recent factor of which is the referendum in the United Kingdom - influences the national political situation which at the present is marked by contradicting factors. On the one hand, by advances and progress which, following the political solution and the implementation of the joint position signed by PCP and PS have enabled the restoration of rights, incomes and pay – of which the State Budget for 2016 is an expression. On the other, by the intensification of factors of blackmail and pressure carried out by big business and by EU institutions, stimulated at the national level by PSD and CDS-PP, under the pretext of possible "sanctions" or "additional measures", the National Reform Programme and the Stability Programme; PS government's refusal to tackle decisively the constraints resulting from external impositions – be they of the debt or of the European Union - or those who in Portugal, associated with monopoly capital, limit the possibility of more decisive steps to reverse the policies of the previous PSD/CDS-PP government. In this context, assumes importance the development of the struggle of the workers and populations and the intense intervention by the PCP.

II -The international situation, developments in the European Union, the struggle of the peoples and anti-imperialist solidarity

1. The main features and trends of international developments persist and deepen - with increasing signs of new episodes of economic crisis looming - in a broad framework of capitalism’s deepening structural crisis.

Imperialism fosters tension, destabilization, aggression against States that, affirming and defending their sovereignty and independence, have represented a factor of containment against the imposition of capitalism’s hegemonic domination, in particular of US imperialism. Expression of this rising confrontation are the wars of aggression in the Middle East, the destabilizing offensives in Latin America and Africa, the advance of NATO towards Eastern Europe and the growing militarisation in Asia and the Pacific.

The Central Committee of the PCP denounces and condemns the warmongering aims of NATO and its Summit to be held on July8 and 9, in Warsaw, Poland, reaffirming PCP’s stand and intervention for the dissolution of this aggressive military-political bloc and the implementation by Portugal of a policy of peace, friendship and cooperation with all peoples of the world.

2. The recent events in the European Union confirm the scenario of deep social crisis, economic stagnation and persistent deflationary trend and deepening instability in the financial sector. All the contradictions that run through the process of capitalist integration and converge into a growing crisis of the European Union and signs of disaggregation deepen.

The victory of the exit from European Union in the referendum held in the UK is an extremely important political event for the peoples of the UK and Europe. It represents a far-reaching change in the process of capitalist integration in Europe and a new threshold in the struggle against the EU of big business and of big powers, and for a Europe of the workers and peoples.

The PCP greets and respects the fact that the British people have decided in a sovereign manner the
destiny of their country, a fact all the more so, since this referendum was held in the context of enormous and unacceptable pressure and blackmail by big transnational economic groups, financial capital and organisations such as the IMF, OECD and even the European Union. The outcome of the British referendum is therefore also a victory over fear, inevitabilities, submission and catastrophism.

The Central Committee of the PCP greets the British Communists and other left-wing forces - rejecting false dichotomies and combating reactionary and xenophobic stances – who assumed and asserted in the referendum their voice in defence of the values of democracy, labour and social rights, progress, solidarity , friendship and cooperation among peoples.

Whilst not ignoring the many motivations that presided in calling this referendum and the factors of reactionary nature and political manipulation of elements that were expressed in the campaign - factors that the PCP frontally fights and rejects - the Central Committee of the PCP stresses that the referendum results show, above all, the rejection of EU policies.

The PCP rejects the irresponsible position of some sectors that spread fear and the idea that the referendum results are a negative development. The exercise of democratic rights and sovereignty of peoples cannot be seen as a problem. On the contrary, the British referendum is a reflection of deep-rooted problems that have long existed and which result from a process that is corroded by contradictions, visibly exhausted and increasingly in conflict with the interests and just aspirations of the workers and peoples.

The British referendum represents an opportunity to face and solve the real problems of the peoples, questioning the entire process of the European Union’s capitalist integration and opening a new and different course of cooperation in Europe, of social progress and peace.

Measures or manoeuvres that ignore the political significance of this referendum; that hide behind the stigmatization of the British people; that attempt to by-pass or even subvert the will of that people; or which seek to take anti-democratic leaps forward, and of further concentration of power within the EU, will only contribute to enhance the problems and contradictions, including the development of reactionary and far-right forces and stands. Forces and stands that were expressed in the British referendum and which feed on the consequences of the European Union’s increasingly anti-democratic, anti-social policies of national oppression.

The PCP stresses that the forthcoming European Council of June 28 and 29 must, as of now, lay the foundations for the convening of an inter-governmental summit, with the aim of enshrining the reversibility of the Treaties, the immediate suspension and repeal of the Budgetary Treaty, as well as the repeal of the Lisbon Treaty.

The PCP stresses the need and importance of measures and actions within the scope of Portuguese foreign policy which, in the context of the detachment of the United Kingdom from the European Union, guarantee national interests, encourage the continuation of mutually advantageous relations of economic cooperation with that country and safeguard the interests and rights of the Portuguese who live and work there.

In a framework in which it is undeniably clear that the European Union does not correspond to the needs of the workers and peoples, the PCP stresses the need to courageously face the constraints arising from the process of European capitalist integration and at the same time, of embarking on a path of cooperation based on sovereign States with equal rights. In particular, stresses the urgency and need of Portugal preparing and be prepared to free itself from submission to the Euro in order to guarantee rights, employment, production, development, sovereignty and national independence.

3. The adoption by the Economic and Financial Affairs Council (ECOFIN) and the expected ratification by the European Council next week, of specific recommendations under the scope of the European Semester, as well as ongoing steps to complete the Banking Union, confirm the insistence on the same economic policies, of exploitation, concentration of economic and political power, impoverishment and submission, and belie the propaganda of a "turning point" in the EU and EMU policies. This course is indeed demonstrated by the discussion about the so-called "sanctions" on Portugal and Spain that beyond the actual sanctions, intends to consolidate and naturalise the whole system of impositions, domination, and economic and political blackmail.

The Central Committee of the PCP draws attention to the steps taken to deepen the militarist and securitary policy of the European Union, namely with the increase in military spending and the development of the European defence agency, and a greater federalisation and "harmonisation" of the militarist and securitary aspects of the EU.

The Central Committee denounces the responsibilities of the European Union and its policies in causing the displacement of millions of refugees and strongly condemns its criminal policy against the humanitarian drama, highlighted by the illegal EU/Turkey agreement criticized by the UN and various international organisations. The fact that the Mediterranean Sea had become a gigantic mass grave is a powerful indictment of EU policy.

4. The Central Committee of the PCP reaffirms its frontal opposition position to the free trade agreements being negotiated by the European Union, and in particular the TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership) and CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement between Canada and the European Union), and emphasizes the demand that the entry into force, final or provisional, of any of these agreements, which the PCP opposes, must be preceded by a public discussion and appreciation and decision by the Assembly of the Republic.

5. The Central Committee of the PCP valorises and expresses PCP’s solidarity with the intense struggles that the workers and peoples carry out throughout the world. In particular expresses its solidarity with the workers and peoples of France and Belgium who carry out important processes of struggle in defence of their rights and are subject to violent repression.

The Central Committee of the PCP reaffirms the solidarity of the Portuguese communists with the people of Venezuela, Brazil and other Latin American countries fighting against the economic and putschist boycott of the reactionary forces and US imperialism. Also salutes the Agreement on a bilateral and definitive ceasefire and cessation of hostilities signed between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, highlighting this important step for building peace with democracy and social justice in Colombia.

6. The PCP will continue to contribute, given the evolution of the international situation and the dangers it entails, to strengthen and develop the struggle and promote cooperation and the broadest convergence among the Communists and between them and other progressive forces, affirming a broad anti-imperialist front. It emphasizes the central importance of the struggle in defence of the rights and advances achieved by the workers and peoples; against the threat of fascism and war; for freedom, democracy, sovereignty and peace; for social progress and socialism.

III -Consolidate the advances, break with the submission and the right-wing policy, affirm the patriotic and left-wing policy

1. The economic situation and its evolution continues to be influenced by factors of international conjuncture associated with capitalism’s deepening structural crisis, lasting consequences of the policy of social regression and economic downfall deeply enhanced by the previous PSD/CDS-PP government and by limitations and options of the PS government that condition the opportunities and prospects of growth, namely the submission to the Euro and the impositions of the European Union and of non-confrontation with the interests of big business.

The data from the budget execution in the first months of the year thus show the set of constraints that limit and jeopardise the necessary economic growth. In fact, and without prejudice to the positive contribution to the budget execution that the increase in domestic consumption and government consumption - resulting from the gradual return of incomes and wage restorations - is giving, the truth is that the drain of resources with the costs of the unsustainable debt (largely illegitimate) and with support and tax breaks to big business (especially financial capital) means very low levels of essential public investment in the current circumstances, to boost economic activity, expand the national productive capacity and create jobs.

Despite the advances and progress in the new phase of national political life, there remain a set of traits in social terms that reflect the sharp worsening of recent years. Examples of this are: continuation of a very high level of unemployment; the situation of poverty and the factors associated with it, despite the increases in the National Minimum Wage, social payments and other positive measures; restrictions in access to healthcare and the answer to the needs of the population resulting from the dramatic underfunding of the NHS. Traits to which we have to add the action of big business, trying to enhance the degree of exploitation of workers by the attack on wages and rights set down in collective bargaining and by precariousness.

2. The State Budget for 2016 portrayed a set of important measures earlier assumed and materialised, in various degrees and scope, a set of other positive measures.

PCP’s vote in favour of the State Budget for 2016 corresponded to an independent assessment of what it contains in terms of progress to a return of rights, wages and incomes, of signs of reversal of the course of exploitation, impoverishment and liquidation of rights, and also what it avoids and prevents, if PSD and CDS-PP had had the opportunity to continue and intensify its policy, if in government.

The state budget for 2016 included PCP’s contributions, namely: the introduction of free school books; guarantee of extraordinary support for the long-term unemployed; changes in the calculation of the contribution by independent workers; allowing the recruitment of workers in Public Higher Education Institutions; the extension of the activity of family childminders; reduction of the maximum rate of the Property Tax (IMI); preferential support to family farming and traditional fisheries; Vehicle Tax exemption to protection and emergency vehicles; guarantee of no increase in the maximum and minimum tuition in public higher education; reposition of the retirement conditions of the workers in the Azores slaughterhouses.

The Central Committee of PCP, valuing what was achieved in the State Budget, does not ignore the insufficiencies nor the number of obstacles and hardships that the advance and consolidation of objectives in the joint PCP-PS joint position will face, as a result of the resistance and boycott of political, economic and financial sectors that nationally find their objectives and projects questioned or nibbled at, even if only a little.

The 2016 State Budget did not give any response to important issues and sectors that were part of PCP’s intervention and proposal, namely: the increase in the real value of retirement pensions; the due support and stimulus to micro, small and medium companies, namely by reducing the minimum amount of the special payment by account; the objective of eliminating the restrictions imposed upon rights and remunerations in the public administration and the State-owned company sector; abiding the Local Finance Law; the increase in tax burden upon financial capital and economic groups. The Central Committee of PCP underlines that it would have been possible to answer these and other issues if PS and the Government had decided to face the interests of big capital and the directorate of European Union powers.

The approval by PCP of the 2016 State Budget was a attitude assumed with conviction in coherence with the contribution PCP gave and will continue to give in the perspective and possibility of corresponding more consistently to the aspirations and interests of our people. A response that does not relinquish, rather demands, the irreplaceable intervention and struggle of the workers and people.

3. The Central Committee of PCP rejects the external constraints imposed on the Country via the deficit value and targets, incompatible with a sustained economic and social development, in addition to the constraints that follow from an unsustainable debt with prohibitive obligations.

Constraints that the Stability Program and the National Plan of Reforms reflect as instruments of budgetary interference and policing by the European Union over the Member States, as a result of the Economic and Monetary Union and its mechanisms, like the Budgetary Treaty, the so-called European Semester and the economic governance.

The Central Committee of PCP, reaffirming its rejection of these instruments and mechanisms, highlights the growing contradiction between the fulfillment of its criteria, “rules” and orientations of the EMU and the European Union and, simultaneously, the possibility of achieving the measures to recover rights and incomes, which the current correlation of forces in the Parliament allows. Simultaneously, it denounces the maneuvers that use predictions, options and orientations of the Stability Plan and the National Reform Plan to develop new operations of blackmail and pressure upon the Country, aimed at repealing measures that restitute rights and incomes conquered in the meantime, and recover the policy of exploitation and impoverishment of the previous PSD/CDS-PP Government.

PCP denounces the manipulation of acts of interference that have marked the recent developments of the political and economic situation of the Country, namely: the Mario Draghi’s statements about the Constitution of the Republic, after the current President of the Republic’s invitation to participate and intervene in the State Council; the pressures from ECB high officials against the reposition of the 35 hour week in the Public Administration; declarations of members of the European Commission on the situation in Portugal and the multiplication of threats of “sanctions” to Portugal.

The National Reform Plan and the Stability Program sent to the European Commission are the Government’s responsibility. PCP did not approve them and does not agree with their objectives, functions and political nature. As throughout the four years, PSD/CDS-PP Government deserved the firm and coherent combat by PCP, also the maneuver by CDS-PP to present a bill, that under the pretext of the Stability Program aimed to recover its policy, also justly deserved the vigorous opposition by PCP.

4. The Central Committee of PCP alerts to PSD’s maneuver who, with the support of CDS-PP, aims to open the way to the privatization of the Caixa Geral de Depósitos [Portuguese state-owned bank]. What PSD aims with the Parliamentary Inquiry Commission is, through the instrumentalization of Parliament, to contribute to the destabilization and deterioration of the image of CGD, favoring the private banks, to fight against the urgent need of public control over banks and confound the Portuguese over the consequences of monopolist control over banks.

The Central Committee of PCP denounces the hypocrisy and falsity of those that, like PSD and CDS-PP, in order to question the recapitalization of CGD, resort to the pretext of inquiring about the situation, management options and errors. Errors and options that are inseparable from the political orientations of successive governments in acts, decisions and business contrary to the interests of CGD and the national economy, for which they are entirely responsible.

Independently of the context and objectives fixed by PSD, PCP will intervene, within the scope of its parliamentary attributions, within and outside of the inquiry commission, in order to establish the truth of the facts and political responsibilities of successive governments of PS, PSD and CDS-PP. PCP never abdicated from the instruments at its disposable to oversee the conduct of governments over the public banks, never stopped denouncing and demanding explanations over the management of CGP according to particular interests. Clarification of past management that aims to contribute towards a future management that will correspond to public interest and not be a copy of private bank management

The Central Committee of PCP rejects the privatization of CGD, an objective of the centers of big transnational capital, of PSD and CDS-PP. Rejects the blackmails and pressures of the European Union and the ECB that under the pretext of recapitalization want to impose a process of restructuring that entails the privatization of new areas, lay-offs, closing branches, weakening the CGD. It condemns the changes in remuneration of CGD Administration, and notes that nominating a new Board of Administration reflects the reestablishment of a central block of interests – in themselves contrary to a management of that institution according to public interest.

The recapitalization of CGD and its development at the service of the people and Country corresponds to a strategic need. It is this objective, and no other, that the process of recapitalization must respect, ensure and enshrine.

The Central Committee of PCP alerts to the general situation of the financial sector, namely the developments in the New Bank with the process of “restructuring”, involving the lay-off of hundreds of workers. The situation of the New Bank, inseparable from the number of cases that involved and involve the private bank, make PCP’s position, to not only demand the integration into the public bank but also the control of the State over the whole financial sector, more relevant and fair.

5. Portugal will face, in the next months, greater challenges, and will be the target of renewed maneuvers of blackmail and pressure within the framework of the decisions of the European Union regarding its economic policies as well as taking advantage of the exit of the United Kingdom in order to, invoking alleged economic instability creased by this decision, force a number of policies of exploitation and impositions by the European Union.

As PCP has underlined, this situation of the Country demands a decisive intervention that ensures economic development and social progress, and that assumes the defense of sovereignty and national interests. Assuming its responsibilities before the workers and people, PCP – the party that acts to take advantage of all the possibilities of response to problems and improvement of living conditions – affirms itself as a aggregating force for convergence of democrats and patriots and a protagonist of the alternative Portugal needs, a patriotic and left-wing policy tied to the values of April.

IV – Taking the mass struggle further, building an alternative life-wing policy

1. The Central Committee of PCP underlines that, in the present situation, broadening and intensifying the struggle for the defense, restitution and conquest of rights is a determining factor in order to consolidate advances already achieved and, simultaneously, breaking with the path of impoverishment and exploitation. The Portuguese workers and people assumed, over the last months, an important role in defense of their rights.

The Central Committee of PCP highlights the mass character of the commemorations of April 25th and the demonstrations on May Day; and the importance of the actions of struggle of the Trade Union Movement, for example the days of struggle on May 16th to 10th, promoted by CGTP-IN, with strikes, rallies and demonstrations involving several activity sectors in defense of their rights, collective work contracts and wages, and many other struggles like those of the Public Administration, several private companies and the working youth. It also highlights the struggle of the high school and university students, farmers and milk and meat producers, the retired and pensioners, and the users of the ex-SCUT.

2. The Central Committee of PCP underlines the important victory represented by the restitution of the 35 hour week for workers with a contract in public service, starting July 1st, following a prolonged struggle developed for 34 months, with actions that involved workers in hundreds of workplaces. An objective to which PCP gave priority status, with the presentation of a bill on October 28th 2015, which would be discussed on January 13th 2016 and approved on January 15th, opening the path towards the restitution and fixation of a 25 hour work week for all workers in the Public Administration, regardless of their ties – and which also demands its implementation for workers with individual contracts – defeating big capital’s operation that had been assumed by the PSD/CDS-PP government.

An achievement along with others, such as the restitution of hour holidays stolen by the PSD/CDS-PP government, that results from the persistence and combativeness of the workers and Trade Union Movement, the development of struggle from the workplaces, proving the strength of the unity of workers. The struggle against the deregulation of the work schedule and the generalization to all workers of the 35 hour work week are demands in which PCP commits its efforts, political action and institutional intervention – as confirmed by the presentation in parliament of proposals along these lines – and which requires the intensification and broadening of the struggle in companies and workplaces.

3. Inseparable from the mobilization and struggle of thousands of micro, small and medium companies in the restaurant sector, as well as from the intervention and proposal by PCP, the VAT upon restaurants will decrease on July 1st. This decision by Parliament reverts a measure with profound and negative consequences for this sector and for the population at large that, by the action of the previous government, led to increased hardships and the closing of hundreds of micro, small and medium companies.

4. The Central Committee of PCP highlights the realization of important Congresses and trade union elections of Worker’s Commissions, as well as the National Meeting of Worker’s Commissions.

5. Faced with an offensive by big capital’s centers of decision, promoted and supported by the media in general, with recourse to lies and demagoguery concerning State financing of private schools in detriment of the defense, support and promotion of the Public School, as enshrined in the Constitution, the Central Committee of PCP values the dimension, contents and significance of the demonstration in defense of the Public School and the social functions of the State held on June 18th, with the participation of 80 thousand people.

6. The Central Committee of PCP appeals to its militants and PCP’s organizations, considering the present political framework and the numerous tasks before the party collective, to concentrate special attention to the development, broadening and intensification of the mass struggle towards the defense, restitution and conquest of rights, highlighting the importance of the struggles for wage increases; the struggle against the deregulation of the work schedule; struggle against precariousness; the defense of rights enshrined in collective contracts; for the repeal of grave norms in the labor legislation – namely the expiration of the collective conventions; and for the reposition of the principle of most favorable treatment for workers.

Struggles and objectives inserted in the more general struggle for a rupture with a right-wing policy and towards achieving a policy tied with the values of April, with the objectives of defending national production and the creation of jobs; the valuing of work and workers; the increase in pensions and social benefits; the defense of the social functions of the State and public services; the public control of the banking sector and other national strategic sectors; the defense of sovereignty, the renegotiation of the debt and the liberation of the Country from the submission to the Euro and other foreign constraints.

These are indispensable objectives for a better life, that claim a refusal of foreign encroachment and the adoption of a patriotic and left-wing policy, and that will be all the more possible to achieve the stronger the mobilization and struggle of workers and people.

V – Reinforce the organization and intervention of the Party, prepare the XXth Congress of PCP

1. Together with the continuous stimulus to mass action and institutional activity, the Party developed a diversified and profound political agenda over the last months, from which the Central Committee highlights: the commemorations of the 95th anniversary of PCP, with the theme “Always with the workers and people, for democracy and socialism”; the cycle of debates on decisive issues for development and national sovereignty – the public control of the banking sector; the renegotiation of the debt and the liberation of the Country from the submission to the euro; the commemorations of the 40th anniversary of the Constitution, of which we highlight the political and cultural sessions held on April 2nd in Lisbon; the commemorations of April 25th and May Day; the diverse propaganda actions, highlighting the campaigns “More rights, more future, no to precariousness” and “Enough submission to the European Union and the euro”, as well as the action with the retired “Valuing pensions and retirements, fighting poverty, giving life dignity”.

The Central Committee of PCP underlines, within the framework of reinforcing the Party, the successful conclusion of the National Fund-raising Campaign “More space, more Festival, a future with April”, with contributions surpassing a million two hundred thousand euros. A result that allows the Party to fulfill the commitments assumed with the acquisition of Quinta do Cabo and its integration within the area of the Avante! Festival and that opens positive perspectives towards the reinforcement of the capacity and financial independence of the Party.

The Central Committee of PCP values the intense institutional activity in the national Parliament and the European Parliament in defense of the interests and aspirations of the Portuguese workers and people, and in defense of the national interest. It highlights, among an intense and diversified intervention, the initiatives and proposals aimed at fighting precariousness and the conversion of precarious ties into effective contracts; the consideration of long contributive careers with the possibility of retirement with penalties after 40 years of contributions; the increase in the real value of pensions; broadening the gratuity of school books; returning the local municipalities to the populations; measures supporting young families and children, by broadening and reinforcing maternity and paternity leave, the creation and a prematurity leave and the investment in a nursery network; ensuring housing for those above 65 years of age avoiding eviction, and widening and reinforcing the rights of inhabitants of social neighborhoods under the regime of rent support.

It also highlights the intense activity in international relationships and the international solidarity of PCP, in particular the participation in solidarity actions with the peoples of Latin America, which united all the left-wing deputies present in the EUROLAT meetings, the visit of a delegation of PCP to Angola, and the participation in the São Paulo Forum, among others.

2. In articulation with the preparation of the XXth, the lines of action of the Party in the coming months are:

Stimulating and supporting the action and struggle of the workers and populations, in defense of collective contracts, restitution of rights, increase in wages, and public services;

The strengthening of united mass organizations, particularly the trade union movement and worker’s organizations in general;

The reinforcement of the Party organization, as part of the action “More organization, more intervention, more influence – a stronger PCP”, highlighting the recruitment and integration of new militants, towards the reinforcement and creation of party cells in the companies and workplaces, the dissemination of Avante! and the increase of the Party’s financial capacity;

The 40th Avante! Festival, which has entered a decisive stage of promotion and sale of Entry Tickets, with the dissemination of the program, along with the tasks of building and preparing the Festival;

The development of a new stage of the national campaign “More rights, more future. No to precariousness”.

The elections for the Legislative Assembly of the Autonomous Region of the Azores, in October, in which PCP will intervene as part of CDU, in defense of the rights of Azoreans, in actions of political elucidation that will seek to consolidate and widen its base of support and the electoral expression in the region;

The intensification and valuing of local work at the service of the populations and preparation of the local elections of 2017, aiming to affirm, throughout the country, CDU and its local project based on work, honesty and competency, which associated proven history with an audacious perspective for the future;

Denouncing the aggressive character of NATO, on the occasion of the Warsaw Summit, and the participation in the elucidation campaign and the actions of protest, in particular the actions called for by the Portuguese Council for Peace and Cooperation (CPPC) and other organizations, in Lisbon and Porto, on July 8th and 9th, respectively.

3. The Central Committee of PCP highlights the importance of the preparation of the XXth Congress of PCP to be held in Almada, on December 2nd, 3rd and 4th, with the theme “PCP – with the workers and people, Democracy and Socialism”.

PCP’s Congress is not merely three days, but implies a stage of preparation that calls upon the participation of militants and Party organizations and constitutes a distinctive element of PCP and its democratic functioning.

The Central Committee of PCP evaluated the first stage of preparation of the Congress, wherein the Party organizations held discussions, based on the topics decided upon in the Central Committee’s meeting of March 4th and 5th. Confirming the analysis of the Central Committee regarding the currency of the Program and the Party Statutes, which justifies its non-alteration, of the debate held so far we highlight the participation, contribution and general agreement on the number of aspects for discussion regarding the international and national situation, the struggle, the mass organizations, political intervention, the alternative and the Party, which constitute orientations towards the elaboration of the Draft Political Resolution, constituting the second preparatory stage that now begins.

The Central Committee of PCP approved the rules of the third preparatory stage, that will begin in September and that will entail the discussion throughout the whole Party of the Draft political Resolution calling upon the participation of militants in the analysis, appreciation and contribution, and the election of the delegates that will represente the Party organizations in the Congress.

The Central Committee of PCP approved the criteria regarding the elaboration of the list of Central Committee members to be elected by the XXth Congress. The list for the Central Committee should translate the identity of the Party and the conditions towards the necessary response and initiative given the great demands following the current and future situations, namely political, ideological, leadership, organization and intervention.

The Central Committee of PCP, following the work experience of the leadership, should maintain its characteristics, namely regarding its competencies and dimension, admitting a small reduction. The Central Committee should maintain its large majority of laborers and employees, with a strong laborer component. The Central Committee should integrate Party cadres – Party workers and non-workers – with responsibilities in leadership work, from companies and workplaces, participants in mass organizations and movements, that stand out in several areas of national life. A natural renovation should consider a composition that associates the participation of experiences cadres with giving responsibility to younger cadres, as well as reinforcing the participation of women.

In the process of preparing the list according to the Party’s working principles and practice, an ample osculation should take place, in a demanding work corresponding to the importance and role of the Central Committee, inserted in the conception of collective leadership, as an organism that leads the activity of the Party in between congresses.

In the framework of intense demands and activity, the Central Committee of PCP appeals to a strong participation in the preparatory work, towards the great success of the XXth Congress.