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Portugal's government's wants to trim corporate tax next year, spurring growth and employment

LISBON, Portugal – Bailed-out Portugal’s government wants approval from Parliament to trim the corporate tax rate to 23 per cent from 25 per cent next year as a way of generating economic growth.

Portugal is expected to weather a third straight year of recession this year. Unemployment is at 16.5 per cent and forecast to rise.

Austerity measures being enacted as part of a 78 billion euro ($106 billion) financial rescue in 2011 have choked private spending and corporate investment.

The secretary of state for tax, Paulo Nuncio, announced Monday plans for a gradual reduction of corporate tax, reaching a rate of between 17 and 19 per cent by 2016.

He said the measure, which is part of the government’s 2014 budget proposal to be debated by lawmakers, aims to attract more foreign investment and create jobs.