On the 16th of June, the Portuguese political party PAN (Pessoas-Animais-Natureza) organized a public talk about Basic Income (BI) in central Lisbon. PAN is presently the only political party in Portugal which defends the BI concept within its electoral program. Another political party, Livre/Tempo de Avançar, has however not formally codified the idea into its platform.
PAN invited researchers and BI activists Roberto Merrill and Pedro Teixeira, who respectively talked about pre-distribution strategies and financing a BI in the Portuguese context. Merrill, a political philosopher, explained three strategies for social pre-distribution of wealth, but “insisted on the importance of developing the commons model of pre-distribution, not only as a way of contributing to a more sustainable world, but also as a way to partly finance a basic income not only in cash, but also through the equalization of an access to commons for all.” Teixeira, a researcher specializing in economic policy, focused on presenting his study on financing a BI in Portugal, specifically from reforming the income tax. Preliminary results show that a modest 420 €/month BI is feasible, even without considering extra sources of financing (such as further tax collection from current tax evasion or financial transactions).
PAN promotes regular debates on important social issues in an initiative called PAN p’ra Mangas where, besides BI, many other themes are explored, such as TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership), environmental taxes, Earth Condominium, food citizenship, and corruption.
More information at:
Roberto Merrill, “Three ways of pre-distribution [Três formas de pré-distribuição]“, Rendimento Básico website, 2015