Portugal government sticks to bailout goals after Gaspar quits

LISBON Tue Jul 2, 2013 8:10am EDT

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LISBON (Reuters) - Portugal remains committed to public deficit goals agreed with its EU/IMF bailout lenders despite the resignation of Vitor Gaspar as finance minister who led Lisbon's austerity drive, a government spokesman said on Tuesday.

The spokesman said any renegotiation of the goals, which the government had acknowledged could be required if the economy continues to underperform expectations, would be done only if necessary and if European partners agree to such talks.

He also said the choice of Treasury Secretary Maria Luis de Albuquerque to replace her former boss Gaspar should help Portugal's credibility abroad and guarantee a smooth transition.

(Reporting By Sergio Goncalves, writing by Andrei Khalip)

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