Portugal - An Advanced Democracy on the Threshold of the 21st Century
- I - The April Revolution a Historical Achievement of Portuguese People
- II - Portugal: An Advanced Democracy on the Threshold of the 21st Century
- 1º. A regime of freedom, in which the people choose their own future and a democratic, representative, modern and efficient State, based on the people's participation
- 2º. Economic Development based on a mixed, modern and dynamic economy, serving the people and the country
- 3º. A social policy to provide better living conditions for the people
- 4º. cultural policy that guarantees access to the creation and enjoyment of culture
- 5º. An independent and sovereign country, with a policy of peace, friendship and cooperation with all peoples
- III - SOCIALISM: PORTUGAL'S FUTURE
- IV- The Party
1. The Portuguese Communist Party is the political Party of the working class and of all working people, fully dedicated to serving the Portuguese people and Portugal. Its prime goals are building Socialism and Communism - a new society freed from the exploitation of man by man, from oppression, inequality, injustice and social scourges, a society in which the development of productive forces, the progress of science and technology, and ever greater economic, social, political and cultural democracy will guarantee citizens' freedom, equality, high living standards, culture, an ecologically balanced environment and respect for human beings.
2. Inspired by its prime goals, the PCP's history, since its founding on March 6, 1921, has been marked throughout the years by unparalleled trials of dedication, courage and heroism of whole generations of members, constantly and consistently fighting to defend the interests of the working class and of all working people, of the Portuguese people and of Portugal. A struggle for freedom, democracy, social progress, culture, peace, national sovereignty and independence, and of solidarity with the cause of social and political emancipation for workers and peoples the world over.
Those are permanent values in the PCP's work - throughout the 48 years of fascist dictatorship, in the April revolution process, throughout the counter-revolutionary process that ensued, and in today's struggle geared toward the future - with various modes of expression and immediate specific goals, according to the prevailing problems and situations; with changes dictated by world developments and experience gained. These values are valid for a long historical period, and they make up the Programme for an advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century that the PCP proposes to the Portuguese people. They are also part - with further enhancement and elaboration - of the vision of a future socialist society.
The struggle for immediate goals and the struggle for an advanced democracy are both part and parcel of the struggle for socialism.
3. The goals of the PCP's struggle correspond to basic interests of the vast majority of the Portuguese people. The working class, whose composition is being modified and diversified with the development of capitalism and of the scientific and technological revolution, is confirming through the struggle its role as the decisive social force in the process of democratic and progressive transformation of society.
The implementation of the advanced democracy proposed by the PCP is objectively in the interests of all working people, of the small and medium-scale farmers, of intellectuals, of technical workers, of small and medium-scale businesspeople in commerce, industry and services, of artisans, and also of pensioners, disabled persons, women and young people as social forces with specific situations, problems, aspirations and goals. This reality and layout of forces determines the system of social alliances. In it, the basic alliances are the alliance between working class and farmers (small and medium-scale farmers) and the alliance between the working class and intellectuals and other middle strata.
The system of party-political alliances encompasses (under different forms) all those democratic movements, organisations and political parties which - in their goals and in their deeds - uphold the interests and aspirations of social classes and forces that take part in the system of social alliances.
The growing foreign domination over Portugal's economy, and the subjection of Portuguese interests to foreign interests - within a framework of monopoly restoration and European integration - have created conditions to extend even further the social and party-political alliances for specific goals, even if merely short-term ones.
The system of alliances determines PCP policy towards working-class unity and unity among all working people, towards unity or convergence between anti-monopoly classes and social movements, towards unity or convergence in action between democratic and patriotic forces.
4. By creatively responding to existing realities and to change, with proposals, solutions and struggles, the PCP reasserts, renews and strengthens its own identity: as a party of the working class and of all working people, with close links to the masses; as a party fighting for a socialist society; as a party whose theoretical basis is materialist and dialectical - necessarily creative - Marxism-Leninism; as a party with thorough internal democracy both in principle and in practice; as a party with a unified line and action, acquired through democratic centralism's inherent development; as a patriotic party, that is at the same time internationalist, co-operating and standing in solidarity with workers' and peoples' struggles in other countries, with Communists and other revolutionary and progressive forces the world over.
5. In upholding the people's and the country's interests, in consolidating, enhancing and building the democratic regime, in the struggle for a new society freed from exploitation of man by man, the PCP plays a necessary, indispensable and irreplaceable role in Portuguese society.
I - The April Revolution a Historical Achievement of Portuguese People
The April revolution is one of the most important events in the eight centuries of Portugal's history.
The April revolution is an achievement of the people's will, an assertion of freedom, social emancipation and national independence.
The April revolution - culminating a long and heroic struggle of the working class, of working people, of the masses of the people and of the democratic forces - put an end to 48 years of fascist dictatorship, ended the colonial war and recognised the right to a full and immediate independence for the peoples in struggle, who had been subjected for centuries to Portuguese colonialism. It thoroughly changed Portugal's positioning in the international arena, and carried out far-reaching political, economic, social and cultural changes which are an integral part of a system and a regime that opened up a new period in our country's history, a period marked by freedom and social progress.
Such deep revolutions do not confine themselves to a revolutionary act, nor are they played out in a short period of time. They are a process which can be more or less long and eventful, and which can undergo regressions and require innovative developments.
The April revolution is an unfinished revolution. Despite its historical achievements, many of its main gains have been destroyed. Others, although weakened and threatened, are still present in the reality of the country. All of them are essential references and values for today and for tomorrow, in a democratic and independent Portugal.
The fascist dictatorship
1. The forty-eight years of fascist dictatorship constitute one of the darkest periods of Portugal's history.
The fascist dictatorship created a totalitarian State and a monstrous police system for political spying and repression, that operated at all levels of the country's affairs, depriving the Portuguese people of their most elementary rights and freedoms.
The dictatorship's history is one of persecution, arrests, torture, sentencing and murder of those who dared to uphold the people's rights, of those who dared to protest and fight for freedom and for better living and working conditions.
Using the State's coercive power, the fascist dictatorship encouraged the centralisation and concentration of capital and the establishment of monopoly groups that became the owners and leaders of all major branches in the national economy, amassing huge fortunes from the super-exploitation, the hardship, poverty and oppression of the Portuguese people, and of the peoples of the Portuguese colonies.
The fascist dictatorship subjected workers to brutal forms of exploitation, sacrificed generations of young people in thirteen years of colonial war, and forced hundreds of thousands into emigration. It increased the discrimination against women and young people, the undernourishment of a large part of the population, the obscurantism, illiteracy and moral debasement of society.
In upholding the interests of latifundio owners and other large-scale rural landlords, the fascist dictatorship accelerated the concentration of agricultural property, rendering the land property structure even more obsolete, dooming the Portuguese agriculture to backwardness and stagnation and rural labourers and small and medium-scale farmers to lives of poverty and hardship.
The fascist dictatorship stepped up the brutal exploitation of the peoples in the Portuguese colonies, denying them the most elementary rights, plundering natural resources, crushing through terror any national feelings or demands, and towards the end, starting colonial wars when the peoples rose up to defend their just rights and win their independence.
The fascist dictatorship tightened even more Portugal's ties of dependence on imperialism, in particular after the beginning of the colonial wars. In exchange for foreign support for the regime, it promoted the association of Portuguese monopoly groups with foreign monopolies, and handed over to imperialism some sectors of the economy which the latter still did not dominate.
The fascist dictatorship's foreign policy was one of collusion with the most reactionary regimes, providing direct support to the fascist uprising in Spain and cooperating with Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy. Military concessions led to the establishment of foreign bases on Portuguese soil. It was a policy of subservience toward the major imperialist powers, of alignment with the warmongering policies of its most aggressive and reactionary circles, of hatred and calls for aggression against the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) and other socialist countries.
2. The PCP Programme adopted in 1965, at the 6th Congress, held in the underground, identified the fascist regime as a terrorist dictatorship of the monopolies (associated with imperialism) and of big landowners - a dictatorship totally opposed to the interests of Portugal and the Portuguese people.
The class nature of the fascist dictatorship and the specific traits of the social and economic structures and of the social classes, the fact that in Portugal a low rate of development coexisted with highly developed capitalist relations of production, as well as the fact that Portugal was at once both a colonialist country and a country dominated by imperialism, rendered the goal of overthrowing the fascist dictatorship and achieving political democracy inseparable from the goals of revolutionary changes in the economic, social and cultural structures and from the defence of national sovereignty and independence.
The PCP Programme for the democratic and national revolution
1. Based on an analysis of the country's reality, the PCP Programme adopted nine years before the 25th of April 1974, spelled out the nature and major goals of the antifascist revolution - a democratic and national revolution.
"Democratic" - as the Programme proclaimed - because "it will put an end to fascist tyranny and bring political freedom, because it will put an end to the financial oligarchy's domination and uphold the people's interests, because it will carry out far-reaching reforms benefiting the vast majority of the Portuguese population."
"National - because in ending imperialist domination over Portugal and Portuguese colonial domination over other peoples, it will guarantee the country's sovereignty, territorial integrity and true national independence."
2. The PCP Programme for the democratic and national revolution consisted of eight major points or goals:
- To destroy the fascist State and establish a democratic regime;
- To liquidate monopoly power and promote overall economic development;
- To implement Agrarian Reform, giving the land to those who till it;
- To raise the living standards of the working classes and of the people generally;
- To democratise education and culture;
- To free Portugal from imperialism;
- To recognise and guarantee the right to immediate independence for the peoples of the Portuguese colonies;
- To follow a policy of peace and friendship with all peoples.
3. The Programme stressed the interdependence of these goals and stated that without the accomplishment of them all, the democratic and national revolution would not be completed and Portuguese society's independent economic and social development would not be guaranteed.
The course of the April revolution has proved that this thesis was correct.
The April revolution
1. The April revolution, triggered by the heroic MFA (Armed Forces Movement) insurrection and immediately followed by a popular uprising, confirmed that the major goals proclaimed by the PCP for the democratic and national revolution corresponded, not just to the objective situation of Portuguese society and to requirements for economic development, social progress and improvement of the people's living conditions, but also to the will of the Portuguese people.
In the process that unfolded in 1974-75 and led to the foundation and establishment of the democratic regime sanctioned in the Constitution of the Republic that was adopted on 2 April 1976 by the Constituent Assembly, and promulgated by the President of the Republic on that very some day, the April revolution deeply changed national reality and Portugal's place in the world.
2. The April revolution:
- Established basic democratic liberties and citizens' essential rights.
- Established Trade-union freedom and workers' right to organise at the shop-floor level, the right to collective hiring and bargaining, the right to strike, to control management, to trade-union participation in managing social security funds and in drafting labour legislation.
- Put an end to the colonial war and made a direct contribution to the independence of peoples that had been subjected to Portuguese colonialism for centuries, as well as creating historically unique conditions for the establishment of relations of friendship and cooperation with those peoples.
- Instituted a political democracy including, as essential elements, the separation, interdependence and complementarity of State institutions, the principle of equal rights for citizens, the role of political parties, direct and universal suffrage and the proportionality principle in the electoral system, democratic local government and regional autonomy for the Madeira and Azores archipelagos.
- Liquidated state monopoly capitalism, the Portuguese monopoly groups and their stranglehold over the national economy, politics and life, and through nationalisations, created a basic sector of the economy free from private interests and which could drive the country's economic development.
- Created conditions for far-reaching economic, social and cultural changes in the countryside, particularly through the Agrarian Reform, by expropriating the big landowners' lands and setting up new operating units: UCP[Collective Production Units]/Cooperatives; by extending land tenants' rights (with the Land Tenure Law); banning archaic land rental systems; recognizing communities' rights to the ownership, management and use of common lands; fostering association through cooperatives.
- Legally sanctioned and implemented equal rights for men and women, as well as rights for the youth.
- Promoted an improvement in the people's living conditions, by establishing a national minimum wage, minimum pensions, the right to social security for large sections of the population; by extending the right to a 30-day paid vacation leave; by establishing vacation allowance, a supplementary December wage, maternity leave; by reducing working hours, establishing protection in case of unemployment, acknowledging the rights of disabled and elderly persons; by implementing progressive changes in education, in health care, culture and sports, all of which represented important steps toward their democratisation; by ensuring major improvements in social infrastructure and equipment.
- Put an end to the country's international isolation and to its complete subjection to imperialism's policies, by establishing diplomatic relations with the socialist countries, diversifying foreign relations, and thus clearing the road for a foreign policy of peace and cooperation.
3. In the process of the Portuguese revolution, the achievement and establishment of freedoms, citizens' rights and a regime of political democracy was inseparable from the liquidation of the monopoly groups' and big landowners' economic and political power, through nationalisations, the Agrarian Reform and the other reforms of social and economic structures, as well as from the end of the colonial war and the recognition of the right to independence for the peoples of the Portuguese colonies. Having to confront the conspiracies, the sabotage and the attempted coups by reactionary circles supported by big capitalists, big landowners and foreign imperialism, the major structural reforms were also necessary to defend the fledgling freedoms and democracy.
Among its great merits is the fact that the April revolution was also a revolution in the minds of the Portuguese people. It was a factor of profound changes in concepts, social and ethical behaviour, mentalities.
Beyond its national historic significance, the April revolution was a major event in the contemporary history of the last few decades and had significant international repercussions.
4. The working class, the masses of the people, and the progressive military - the "April captains" - together in the People-MFA alliance, played an essential role in all democratic gains.
Throughout this whole process the PCP was an essential and determining political force. Its role in the April revolution and in the democratic regime's foundation will remain as one of the greatest achievements in its history.
The counter-revolutionary process
1. The Portuguese revolution brought with it valuable experience as to how, in a revolutionary situation and even though not controlling political power, the masses of the people in motion and in alliance with the MFA, were capable of profoundly transforming society, undertaking and carrying out far-reaching reforms of the social and economic structures, influencing and conditioning the attitudes of the political power structures and contributing towards the legal recognition of the revolutionary advances.
The years that followed also showed the masses' extraordinary ability to resist counter-revolution, even when it is unleashed and carried out by the political power structures. But experience also confirmed that the issue of political power ultimately determines the course of national politics.
2. Splits, conflicts and confrontations within the MFA, which enabled conservative and revanchist elements to gradually recover positions within the Armed Forces; the collaboration of the Socialist Party (PS) and of democratic sectors of the MFA with the most conservative and coup-mongering circles within the new power structures; ultra-leftism; anti-communism; imperialism's financial, economic, political and diplomatic interference and pressure - all these factors opened the road to a counter-revolutionary process, to the advance of reactionary and conservative forces within the new system of power which was being created, and to political alliances which were to culminate in the November 25  coup, the main consequences of which were the de facto destruction of the MFA and a radical shift in the balance of forces.
From 1976 onward - in blatant disrespect for the Constitution of the Republic and for democratic laws - the policies of the successive cabinets with diverse party compositions (PS alone, PS/CDS, PSD/CDS, PS/PSD, PSD) as well as of some of the so-called "presidential initiative" cabinets, adopted as their strategic goal and line of action in all specific policies, that of restoring monopoly capitalism, with its logic of exploitation of the workers and of centralisation and concentration of capital.
3. The counter-revolutionary process, in its actions to destroy the achievements of the April revolution, has been and is being carried out along five fundamental, complementary and inseparable, directions: a) to reconstitute and restore the socio-economic structures of State monopoly capitalism; b) to increase workers' exploitation, to destroy some of their rights and freedoms and seriously restrict the Portuguese people's social rights; c) to pervert the democratic regime, tending towards the setting up of an authoritarian regime; d) to promote and re-establish obscurantist or backward values in culture, in peoples minds, in ideology; e) to accept, as a strategic option, the growing domination of the Portuguese economy by foreign capital and restrictions upon national sovereignty and independence.
The reconstitution and restoration of socio-economic structures of monopoly capitalism was carried out by means of a planned, coordinated and gradual offensive against the nationalizations and other non-capitalist sectors. It began with the transfer to the bosses of companies under State intervention, cooperatives, and companies under self-management. It drew strength from credit, investment, price and foreign trade policies that were unfavourable to the nationalized companies, and from the appointment to the latter of managers with an interest in sinking them, since their mission was to pave the road for privatization. It moved ahead with the gradual - and ultimately total - handover of public companies to private capital. And it has been a sequence of frauds, under-assessments, auctions, acts of plunder, cases of corruption, give-aways of billions of escudos of State money, and stock market speculation.
The same policy of capitalist and monopolist reconstitution and restoration has meant, insofar as landed structures are concerned, the destruction of the Agrarian Reform with the restoration of big land estates through illegal and violent actions against the workers; through the looting of Collective Farms (UCPs) and Cooperatives; through the handover to big landowners of land, livestock, machinery, facilities and crops; through the destruction of tens of thousands of jobs; through a legal, financial and technical blockade and through blatant disrespect of court decisions.
It has also implied the deterioration of the small and medium enterprises' economic situation; successive attempts to destroy community rights which had been won with the Common Land Law; the elimination of tenant farmers' rights which had been won with the Rural Rent Law; and incentives to the concentration of agricultural property.
All these offensives represent a real crusade of plunder, of forced accumulation and centralization of capital. Capital and the domination of the main means of production are, as a consequence, being transfered into the hands of the - increasingly associated - domestic and foreign big capitalists.
The policy of monopolist restoration, with the offensives against the achievements of the April Revolution, has had highly damaging consequences. The productive apparatus has been disorganized. Major companies, which should have a crucial role for development, have been sacrificed. Many others have been shut down. The major national development projects have been abandoned. Financial resources have been wasted on compensations, non repayable loans and sweeteners for big capitalists. Agriculture is stagnant and in crisis, and thousands of hectares of land which was stolen from the Agrarian Reform are once again lying idle. Parasitic and speculative activities are multiplying and leading to the fast enrichment of some, at the expense of working people and the public coffers, and drying up and consuming a large share of country's resources. The dominant positions of imperialism in Portugal's economy have increased, and with Portugal's integration within the EEC, the country's power to decide on important areas of the national economy has been affected. The policy of monopolist restoration is an anti-national policy.
As a corollary of the restoration of monopoly capitalism, there has been increased exploitation of working people and the destruction of some of their rights and freedoms, as well as serious restrictions on their social rights. This has been reflected in wage restraints; in the imposition of wage ceilings whilst prices rose; in the decrease in labour's share of the national income; in insufficient increases in old-age pensions; in collective lay-offs; in the growth in short-term contracts and other forms of precarious jobs; in the freezing or restrictions to collective bargaining and negotiations; in more and new pretexts for sackings without just cause, such as inadequacy and training periods; in wage arrears; in restrictions upon trade union freedom and in rights of Workers' Councils; in blocking workers' monitoring of Management; in more widespread repression by bosses on the shop floors; in greater discrimination against women and young people; in child labour; in more expensive and worse health-care, housing, education and legal system, and in more widespread poverty and social marginalization.
The perversion of the democratic regime, tending towards the establishment of an authoritarian regime, has been reflected in decisions, actions, attempts and projects seeking to gradually governamentalize all political power; challenging the independence and powers of other sovereign institutions (President of the Republic, Parliament and Courts); subordinating and controlling democratic local government; destroying the mechanisms of accountability of Government actions, so as to ensure impunity; restricting Opposition rights; changing the electoral laws, seriously undermining their democratic nature and the principle of proportional representation; restricting citizens' rights and freedoms, namely the right to strike and the right for Trade Unions and Workers' Councils to organize and carry out their activities on the shop floors; the exclusion of representative social organizations; control over the mass media; a political purge and occupation of the civil service by the clientele of the Party in office; the strengthening of special repression forces; the creation of new secret police forces.
The promotion and re-establishment of obscurantism or backward values in culture, mentalities and ideology has been reflected in a constant activity to conceal and falsify the fascist regime's true nature and its crimes and to belittle the significance, achievements and impact of the democratic revolution; in attempts to make anti-communism and anti-democratic discriminations a State policy; in identifying the national interest solely with the Party in office, confusing it with the State; in the promotion of class conciliation and the pretense community of interests between capital and labour; in the defense of conservative views on women's role in society and family; in neglecting workers' role in the life of the country, attributing to capitalists the decisive role in the creation of wealth and in the country's progress; in an acritical glorification of Government stability, and even of personal power; in fomenting an exacerbated individualism and egotism in social life.
The acceptance, as a strategic option, of restrictions to national sovereignty and independence was inspired by the purpose of speeding up the destruction of the April revolution's achievements and restoring monopoly capitalism, chaining Portugal to the world capitalist system. This has been reflected in numerous guidelines and decisions which, in the spheres of Portugal's integration within the EEC, of the country's participation in other international organizations, and in the economic, military, cultural and foreign policy and security spheres, have created new and greater ties of dependence and subordination.
4. The offensives against the April [revolution's] gains and the Portuguese people's steadfast struggle to defend them, were characterized on the one hand by a constant disrespect and breach of the law and the Constitution by successive Governments, and on the other, by a people's struggle carried out in strict abidance of the law.
Democratic legality emerged as a real obstacle to a policy which subverted the democratic regime that was set up with the April revolution. The efforts to override the Constitution by adopting unconstitutional laws, and the creation of an institutional disruption through a subversive amendment of the Constitution are both part of the ruling class' plans to restore State monopoly capitalism.
Common Market and European Union - constraints and restrictions on our independence
1. Portugal's entry into the EEC, which the PCP correctly opposed and whose negative consequences it foresaw, has created greater obstacles for a democratic policy, has given new pretexts to destroy the April revolution's achievements and has generated a dynamic that is seriously harmful for the national interest.
The subordination of Government policies to the goal of restoring the power of big business, coupled with the inexistance of a firm policy to defend the national interest, have led, not just to neglecting the latter during the negotiation process which led to Portugal's entry in the EEC, but also to a constant haste and early introduction of the undertakings and requirements which resulted from that process. The transitional periods and the substantial financial resources which were received have not, by and large, and despite the many infra-structures which have been built, been used to modernize the country's productive apparatus, to significantly decrease the regional asymmetry or the country's relative backwardness in relation to other EEC countries. Nor have they created stable and lasting foundations for a true process of economic and social development.
2. The Common Market (namely the free flow of goods and capital) already embodied for Portugal, due to its relative backwardness, unfavourable aspects for its development and new restrictions for its independence. The federalist course of the European integration in the economic, political and military spheres, threatens to turn Portugal into a peripheral client State, whose policies may increasingly be determined, even if against Portuguese interests, by supra-national bodies which are essentially run by the strongest and richest States and by the transnational corporations.
This is an extremely serious threat to our national independence and sovereignty, which may result in historical consequences that will be difficult to reverse.
The situation created by these developments and their difficult short-term correction (the situation has worsened with the ratification of the Maastricht Treaty) makes it absolutely necessary to adopt a policy with four main directions: to firmly defend, at all times, Portuguese interests, resisting all decisions which harm them; to minimize, through concrete measures, the negative constraints and consequences of our integration; to fight against all limitations upon the democratic nature of the European institutions; and to use all means, resources and possibilities opened up by our integration, in order to promote Portugal's progress and the welfare of the Portuguese people.
3. The internationalisation of the economy, the profound international division of labour, the growing cooperation between States and the processes of integration correspond, in this latter part of the 20th century, to realities and trends of development that are not exclusive to capitalism. According to their course, characteristics and goals, such processes may benefit the monopolies and the transnationals, or they may benefit the peoples. It is each people's and each country's inalienable right to fight to defend their interests and rights.
Nothing can force Portugal to give up its right to choose its own social and economic structures and its own political system. Nothing can force Portugal to accept the status of a client State within the EEC - an organisation which strengthens and coordinates those States which are controlled by big business, monopoly groups and transnational corporations - and to alienate its national independence and sovereignty. The Portuguese people have, and must always have, the full right to determine their own destiny and to choose the paths which they deem are in accordance with their historical identity and their interests and yearnings.
The achievements of the April revolution in Portugal's democratic future
1. The April revolution represented a remarkable progress for Portuguese society. The April revolution's great and historic achievements created the conditions for a dynamic economic, social, political and cultural development, corresponding to the situation and to the interests, requirements and aspirations of the Portuguese people and of Portugal.
The vigorous, persistent and determined struggle by the workers, by broad social sectors and by the more coherent democratic forces managed, in various crucial moments, although sometimes only temporarily, to defeat ongoing offensives. This is a demonstration of how profound were the democratic changes that were operated and how much the achievements of the April revolution were in accordance with objective needs of an economic and social nature.
The Portuguese revolution displayed the necessary strength and potential to enadicate many of the most striking inequalities, discriminations and social injustices and to build a new democratic society.
2. The destruction of the achievements of [the] April [Revolution], a monopoly capitalist economic system, a political regime with authoritarian traits and the sacrifice of national independence, are not in the interests of the Portuguese people and of Portugal. The PCP decidedly fights against such a system and such a regime, and proposes an alternative.
A democracy corresponding to the people's aspirations and to the nation's needs requires not only formal recognition but also effective guarantee of the full exercise of freedoms and respect for citizens' political and social rights. Such a democracy requires an organisation of the political power system which will prevent or discourage any illegal or arbitrary actions on the part of its institutions and ensure the people's participation in national policy decision-making. The course and the main levers controlling the national economy must not be held by monopoly capital or transnational corporations and subjected to their interests, but must serve the country's interests. Within the world context of an internationalization of the productive processes, of an international division of labour and of processes of economic cooperation and integration, Portugal must make full use of, and develop, its own natural and human resources and acquire a modern industry. Agriculture must be developed and promoted, something which is incompatible with the latifundio agriculture and the neglect for small and medium farmers. The service sector must be modernized and made more efficient. The Portuguese people's material and cultural living conditions must be improved. All economic, social, political and cultural life must be democratised. A policy of national independence, which is separable from a democratic policy, must be proclaimed and implemented.
3. The April Revolution's main values have grown deep roots in Portuguese society, and are projected as objective realities, requirements, experiences and aspirations into Portugal's democratic future. The advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century proposed by the PCP to the Portuguese people emerges as the historical follow-up of the programme for the democratic and national revolution drawn up and adopted in 1965, and of the April revolution's ideals, victories and achievements, which are also of historic value.
II - Portugal: An Advanced Democracy on the Threshold of the 21st Century
1. In the Communist ideal and project democracy is simultaneously political, economic, social and cultural:
- Political democracy, based on the people's sovereignty, on elected State institutions at all levels, on the separation and interdependence of power institutions, on pluralism of opinion and political organisation, on individual and collective liberties, on the direct participation of citizens and the people in political affairs and in monitoring and overviewing the exercise of power;
- Economic democracy based on the subordination of economic power structures to democratic political power structures, on social ownership of the major and strategic sectors of the economy as well as of the main national resources, on the democratic planning of the economy, on the coexistence of different economic formations, on workers' control of management, and on workers' real participation and say in the management of public companies and capital;
- Social democracy based on the effective exercise of worker's rights, on the right to a job and a fair wage and to adequate living conditions for all citizens, on full and equal access to social services and benefits, specifically as concerns health, education, housing, social security, physical exercise, sports and leisure;
- Cultural democracy based on true access by the masses of the people to culture, the creation and enjoyment of culture, and on freedom and support for cultural production.
2. A democratic regime must confront and move to solve the most acute national problems and successfully live up to the great challenges which Portugal must face at the end of the 20th Century.
The advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century submitted by the PCP to the Portuguese people contains five major components or goals:
- A regime of freedom, in which the people choose their own future and a democratic, representative and modern State, based on the people's participation.
- An economic development based on a mixed, modern and dynamic economy, serving the people and the country.
- A social policy to provide better living conditions for the people.
- A cultural policy that guarantees access to the creation and enjoyment of culture.
- An independent and sovereign country with a policy of peace, friendship and cooperation with all peoples.
1. Political democracy, although intimately articulated with economic, social and cultural democracy, has an intrinsic value. It is therefore necessary to safeguard and guarantee it as an integral and inalienable element of the Portuguese society. Having been deprived of freedom during the 48 years of fascist dictatorship, having won freedom and lived in freedom following the 25th of April, the Portuguese people know the value of freedom and never want to lose it again. Freedom belongs to the people and to each individual, and as such is an essential element of the advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century proposed to the Portuguese people by the PCP . Pre-requisites for a regime of freedom are: the existence of material and cultural conditions for the exercise of freedom, equal rights, duties and opportunities for all citizens , without any discrimination - specifically those based on sex, race, political opinions, trade-union affiliations, religious beliefs or economic or social status.
A regime of freedom must also include:
- Recognition and effective guarantees for the exercise of citizens' freedoms and rights.
- Pluralist , democratic and responsible mass media.
- Democratically held elections which truly reflect the people's will and their decisive participation in choosing the country's leaders and policy.
2. Individual, political, labour and social rights will be fully guaranteed, and mechanisms will be set up to encourage their use and to prevent these rights from being abusively curtailed, suspended or restricted.
Fundamental individual rights, such as the right to life, to physical and moral integrity, to individual identity, civil rights, the right to citizenship, to one's good name and reputation, to protect one's image and the privacy of individual and family life will be fully recognised and guaranteed.
As part of the fundamental rights, guarantees and freedoms, the following will be fully sustained:
- Freedom of expression of opinion, of the press and of access to information, with censorship being forbidden and political and ideological pluralism guaranteed.
- Freedom of assembly and demonstration without the need for prior permission and with guaranteed access to public grounds and premises, to enable the effective exercise of these rights throughout the whole of the nation's territory.
- Freedom to set up political parties and other associations, and for their activities without interference or need for prior permission from the authorities.
- The right to elect and be elected, and equal and free right of access to public office.
- Trade union freedom with effective guarantees for the exercise of trade union rights in all workplaces. The right to collective bargaining and to participate in the drafting of labour legislation and in social security management, as well as the right to set up and run Workers' Councils including the exercise of workers' control over management.
- The right to strike, with its extent and goals determined exclusively by the workers, and the banning of lock-outs.
- The right to intellectual, scientific and artistic creation, with effective support for the production and diffusion of the resulting work.
- Freedom of conscience, religion and worship, including the right to organise and conduct religious worship and to religious education within each confession, as well as recognition of conscientious objection.
- Freedom of movement and residence in all of the nation's territory, as well as the right to leave the country, to emigrate and to return.
- The right to freedom and security and the right to privacy for individual and family life (inviolability of communication, mail and home, banning the improper use of computer systems).
The fundamental rights, freedoms and guarantees of workers and their organisations - and specifically the right to job security - shall enjoy the same treatment and protection as the other fundamental rights.
For the implementation of fundamental rights and freedoms it is essential to ensure the right of access to law courts and to legal counsel , the right to habeas corpus , the right to a speedy legal process and trial, the right to legal defense in criminal proceedings, the right to resist orders which offend rights, freedoms and guarantees, the right to direct action when the forces of law and order are not available, the right to individually and collectively petition State institutions and any authority, the right to popular action in defence of rights, of the Constitution, of laws and of the public interest.
3. Pluralist, democratic and responsible mass media are essential in a regime of freedom. In genuinely free conditions the mass media are indispensable in helping to form citizens' opinions and in encouraging them to civic participation. They can contribute to transparency in political affairs, to democratic control of administration actions, to a genuine expression of the people's will through elections, to a knowledge of reality and to the collective effort to solve the nation's problems, to improve the people's cultural level, and to friendship and understanding among peoples.
Important factors for a pluralist democratic, and responsible mass media include:
- the existence - side by side with privately owned media - of a public sector including the different media ( television, radio, press ) which by virtue of its constitutional and legal status will be independent from the Government and political parties and explicitly bound to guaranteeing pluralism and the expression and clash of different trends of opinion;
- Protection of mass media independence from economic powers, specifically by preventing monopoly concentration of mass media enterprises;
- Guaranteed rights for journalists and other mass media workers, and their respect for ethical and professional standards;
- Guaranteed broadcasting rights, as well as the right to political rebuttal and to reply;
- Protection of the national identity, language and independence, particularly as concerns the audio-visual media and telecommunications;
- Support for regional and local media;
- Media management free from government control, and State financial support for the media without any discrimination;
- Impartial and independent criteria in the licensing of media, whenever the law requires it;
- The existence of diverse constitutional bodies to preserve the freedom of information and guarantee pluralism.
In the free society proposed by the PCP to the Portuguese people, elections are the direct basis of political power and of the legitimacy of its institutions.
This component of a regime of freedom requires that elections be held according to rules that ensure the democratic nature of the whole process and the representativity of those elected, with the effective elimination of economic, social and moral pressure or coercion, as well as of methods of manipulating public opinion and of misrepresenting the people's will.
The democratic nature of an election does not depend solely on the conditions under which voting or the election campaign are held. It also depends on the situation prevailing outside electoral periods, on the effective exercise of rights, and on citizens' continuing participation and involvement in national affairs.
In the same way as political power is legitimatized by the people's will, expressed in truly democratic elections, those who exercise political power lose their legitimacy when they do not respect democratic legality or act to destroy the democratic regime.
Fundamental principles of the electoral process are:
- Direct, secret and periodic suffrage;
- Right to elect and be elected from the age of eighteen;
- A proportional representation system for the conversion of votes into mandates in the direct election for the National Parliament, the European Parliament, the Regional Legislative Assemblies, all local government assemblies and the Municipal Executives;
- A single electoral register for all elections, controlled by citizens and political parties and with compulsory registration of all eligible voters living on national territory;
- Equal and free access to the mass media and to all other forms of contact and communication with voters;
Free and effective scrutiny over elections.
5. The regime of freedom proposed by the PCP implies that the State and other entities respect each citizen's right to political freedom. It also implies guaranteed freedom and right to social participation, guaranteed economic, social and cultural rights for workers and their organisations, and for other social strata and organisations.
The full expression of, and respect for, fundamental rights and freedoms is not separable from the implementation of the other aspects of political democracy , or from the gradual implementation of economic, social and cultural democracy.
The advanced democracy which the PCP proposes and advocates seeks to increasingly extend the scope and exercise of personal and collective freedoms, and to effectively guarantee workers' and citizens' rights.
6. The State, its characteristics, the criteria used in defining its institutions, the extent to which, and the direction in which, it exercises its functions, its inclusiveness of the peoples' participation and intervention in the political and administrative decision-making process, are both in themselves goals of the Programme and pre-conditions for the implementation of other programmatic goals.
In the monopoly capitalist system the State, given its class nature, is part of, and guarantees the operationality and survival of the capitalist mode of production, even through violence and coercion. It is in essence, and in general terms, a tool of capital. In the advanced democracy which the PCP submits to the Portuguese people (including an economic set-up based on a mixed economy, not dominated by the monopolies, a regime of freedom, a democratic election system), the State must be structured and operate so as to correspond to the people's and the country's requirements, in strict compliance with democratic law.
The following are component aspects of a democratic, representative, participatory and modern State, serving the people and the country:
- An organisation of the political power structure based on universal, direct, secret and periodic suffrage for the elected institutions and on the separation and interdependence of State institutions;
- Constant participation of the people in the exercise of power;
- An independent, democratic, speedy and affordable legal system;
- A decentralised, spatially distributed, non-bureaucratic and open public administration;
- Essential public services, guaranteed by the State;
- Armed Forces serving the nation's independence and sovereignty and the territory's integrity;
- A security and public order system based primarily on prevention and on effective respect for, and guarantee of, the individuals' and the workers' rights and freedoms.
7. The structure, organisation and scope of the political power system will ensure the stability, continuity and development of the democratic regime, as well as the work of the institutions in accordance with their regulations and specific role, and with the Portuguese people's interests.
The following are essential traits of the political power set-up in the advanced democracy proposed by the PCP:
- Separation and inter-dependence of the State institutions: President of the Republic, Parliament [Assembly of the Republic], Cabinet and Courts;
- Legislative and monitoring powers of Parliament, opposing all factors which curtail such powers;
- Compulsory respect for Constitutional principles and for the law, guaranteed through the intervention of law courts - which are sovereign institutions whose independence must be protected - and through the people's control and vigilance;
- Democratic Local Government with effectively guaranteed autonomy of decision within its scope of action, and in particular with administrative and financial autonomy , and provided with the means to tackle and solve community problems;
- The creation of administrative regions in continental Portugal, whose boundaries will take into account the will of the communities and local government bodies. This is a factor of democratic reform and decentralisation of the civil service, which can alleviate the serious regional imbalances, help achieve harmonious national development and assist in ensuring municipal autonomy;
- Political and administrative autonomy for the Autonomous Regions [Madeira and Azores archipelagoes] within a framework of national unity and sovereignty, as a way of taking into account the specificity of the insular regions and of corresponding to the yearnings of their populations;
- Recognition of the role of political parties as one of the essential organisational elements of various social interests and bodies of opinion and of democratic participation in the power structures.
8. Constant people's participation in the exercise of power will be ensured not only through the modes characteristic of representative democracy , but also through forms of direct and participatory democracy. The following are stressed as particularly important:
- The right of all citizens to - without any privilege or discrimination - take part in political activities and in the management of the country's political affairs, in particular by holding public office;
- The right of workers' representative organisations to participate in conceiving and drafting labour policies and legislation;
- The right of farm workers and of small and medium-scale farmers to, through their own organisations, participate in defining and implementing agricultural policies, particularly in the Agrarian Reform area;
- The right of workers to take part in the management of public and public-participation companies and to exercise control of management at the workplace;
- The right of small and medium-scale businessmen and of their representative organisations to take part in defining and implementing major commercial and industrial policies;
- The right of intellectuals and technical and scientific workers and their organisations to take part in defining and implementing major policies involving their activity and interests;
- The right of women, youth, pensioners, disabled persons, emigrants, and their organisations, to participate in defining and implementing major policies concerning their respective spheres;
- The right of people to participate in judicial proceedings and in the management of social security, health, education, cultural , sports and environment services;
- The right of participation of people's grassroots organisations in the activities of Local Government and Public Administration;
- The right of law enforcement agents, the military and their representative organisations to have a say in the major decisions concerning their interests;
- The rights to petition and to mass action;
- The right to community initiatives and local consultation.
9. The justice system will be democratised, modern, speedy. The access of all, in particular of working people, to legal services will be guaranteed, extending fully or partially free-of-charge legal training, counsel, extra-judicial and pre-judicial support and competent legal representation to needy citizens, with adequate levels of, and exemptions from, judicial costs. Legal procedures will be simplified. The judicial procedures will be modernised and rationalised. The judicial system will be brought closer to the population and the population will take part in it. Effective respect for the independence of law courts will be guaranteed, with mandatory and speedy implementation of their decisions. The independence of judicial magistrates and the autonomy of Public Attorneys will be guaranteed. The penitentiary system and regulations will be humanised enabling true social rehabilitation. Non-judicial forms of solving conflicts will be encouraged, guaranteeing the safeguard of collective interests (in spheres such as the environment, public health, consumer protection) and compensation for damages suffered by the victims of crimes and judicial errors.
10. Public Administration will be geared toward development, and be decentralised, spatially distributed, de-bureaucratised, modern, efficient, open, in close touch with the population and serving community interests. It shall operate with honesty, without bias, with fairness and impartiality, be held accountable for its operation, comply and enforce compliance with democratic laws. It will ensure that all decisions are well grounded and that all requests of individuals and the public in general are always speedily dealt with, and that all have access to their respective files. It will guarantee respect for the rights of public employees as well as motivate and encourage their participation, using merit and competence as criteria for access to Administration posts, for promotions and appointments to management posts and to posts at all levels, and will reject favouritism and partisan appointments. Judicial overseeing of administrative legality will be guaranteed, as will the implementation of law court sentences.
11. The State will take responsibility for, and guarantee essential social services such as social security, health care and education, as well as housing for the less well-off strata, urban public transport and emergency services, without precluding the existence of private activity in these spheres as long as it participates in the State's democratic policies. The State will also guarantee basic infrastructures and social equipment.
12. The Armed Forces, loyal to the Constitution and to democratic values, will be fully dedicated to defending the nation's independence and sovereignty and the territory's integrity against all external threats. This entails the priority of missions on national territory and equipment in accordance with those missions and their defensive nature. Without affecting military defence, they will collaborate in tasks of community interest. With a specific defence doctrine, they must be endowed with autonomous military capability, and be based on compulsory service conducted in dignified conditions for young people. The Armed Forces will be subordinated to political power, but with an appropriate measure of autonomy. The Armed Forces, at the same time as they require political impartiality in the exercise of functions, will refuse all political and ideological discrimination in their internal operation. They will guarantee the civic rights and dignity of military personnel and they must be an institution identified with all that is most patriotic and progressive in the past, in particular its decisive role in overthrowing the fascist regime and putting an end to the colonial wars.
13. Public security and order will be ensured by the State and guaranteed by adequately co-ordinated and organised forces and services which are non-partisan, institutionally controlled solely by national authorities, within the judiciary and under the Public Attorney , guided and trained to respect the Constitution, the law, the freedoms, rights, equality, security and peace of citizens. The security forces and services will be institutions which serve the community and are engaged in preventing and dissuading crime, thus assisting in curtailing the use of repressive measures. They shall fight crime, and specifically criminal organisations, drug trafficking, crimes against the environment and the economy, corruption and violence.
14. The democratic State is a constituent part, an instrument, an expression and a guarantor of the advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century that the PCP submits to the Portuguese people.
1. The goals of economic development must be: to improve the Portuguese people's living standards and quality of life, to achieve full employment, to largely fulfill the needs of the population, to share the wealth created in a fair and balanced manner and to preserve national independence.
In the advanced democracy, development policies will be based on the development of productive forces; on increased production - which is a prerequisite for improving the people's living conditions and overcoming the nation's problems; on improving the national productive system's coordination, complementary and coherence; on a harmonious development of the whole nation; on assessing the environmental implications of all economic activities; on defending the national interest within the framework of the Portuguese economy's insertion and interdependence with the world economy, assisting in overcoming our external economic imbalance; on a dynamic, but not submissive, participation in the international division of labour; and on solidarity with a just economic world order.
The development policy envisages a modern economy, with a broader, more solid, scientific and technological foundation and a new specialisation in production:
- An economy with numerous high-quality and national-added-value products and services and with high levels of technology , productivity, employment, wages and professional training;
- An economy in which the main structural deficits - food, energy, technology and machinery - are substantially reduced, safety levels in terms of food production are guaranteed, the trade deficit is reduced, the balance of current transactions is tendentially balanced and the foreign debt is held at a withstandable level, its annual service not severely limiting the economy's growth potential and not jeopardising national independence;
- An economy where the working people's active, interested and creative participation and control of management are encouraged and supported, and where the necessary conditions are created so that small and medium-scale businessmen, farmers and fishermen may effectively contribute toward social production;
- An economy whose growing specialization and integration within the international division of labour is accompanied and supported by a stronger national base for accumulation and a stronger scientific and technological foundation.
2. In order to achieve this project, it is necessary to have a development strategy which:
- Domestically, takes into account the reality of the country, namely its current level of development, sectoral and regional shortcomings and imbalances, the level of dependence and fragile and peripheral specialisation of production, the backward sub-systems of technological research and development and educational and professional training;
- Externally, considers the context of the changes at a world level (namely in terms of the international division of labour) takes into account the need to counter and cushion the harmful consequences and the obstacles to our economic development which are created by Portugal's integration within the EC, at the same time as it seeks to benefit from the resulting possibilities and opportunities.
Such a development strategy must have as its main directions:
- Mobilising, adequately managing and making good use of natural resources (agriculture, livestock, game, fishing, minerals, water, energy, tourism) taking into account the necessary specialisation, defending and improving the environment, preserving and restoring the natural heritage and ecological balances, making good use of the productive capacity and fostering the infrastructures which are essential to national and regional economic development;
- Cherishing and making good use of human resources, promoting high skills through a schooling and professional training of high human, scientific and technical standards for young people and through permanent training of the adult labour force - with due attention given to the potential which lies in the growing social role of women and of young people, in our technical workers' technical and scientific capabilities and in the professional experience of emigrants who return home;
- Increasing the role of science and technology in the productive forces and in economic development, by continuously stepping up and coordinating scientific research and technological development work;
- Modernizing the economy and raising productivity, which requires that Portugal's economy be rationalised and functionally reorganised , specifically in the traditional low-value-added sectors and products, that the most serious regional imbalances be overcome, that there be a more dense productive network, that the scientific and technological revolution's gains be applied in the economic and social spheres ;
- Creating a core of equipment-producing industries adequate to the country's necessary productive specialisation in accordance with the trends of domestic and world demand, changing the production structures so as to guarantee a better position for Portugal in the international division of labour ;
- De-centralised and participatory planning which may, in a prospective and integrated way, and taking the market into account, determine major guidelines, goals and targets, seeking a coherent productive process and a better overall allocation of national resources;
- International economic cooperation based on asserting the national interest within the international division of labour, on effective cooperation within the framework of integration into the EC, and on other lines of international relations and cooperation, respecting national sovereignty and independence.
3. To ensure this economic development project - and all the more so , the greater Portugal's insertion within the EC - a mixed economic formation is necessary, not dominated by monopolies, with diverse property sectors (each with its own complementary dynamism), all respected and supported by the State. Specifically:
- A State sector - nationalised, public, public-capital and state-participated companies - which is dynamic, integrated, modernised, encompassing in particular banking and insurance and other basic and strategic branches of the economy (in power, industry, transport and communications) with diverse forms of organisation and playing a determining role in the development of productive forces and in accelerating economic development;
- A private sector, made up of companies of various dimensions (industry, agriculture, fisheries, commerce, services), with a particular role for small and medium companies due to their flexibility and their share of production and employment , and small and medium farms, particularly family farms, due to their role in agricultural and livestock production and in preserving the rural world;
- A cooperative and social sector, made up by cooperative farms and by production, services, housing, consumer marketing, educational and cultural cooperatives, mutual aid funds, as well as self-managed companies and others.
4. To subordinate economic powers to democratic political power structures and to control the main levers of the nation's economy, freeing it from big business domination and from foreign dictates, requires: the existence of a State sector which implies the nationalisation of basic and strategic companies, and where company management will include workers' participation and be coordinated and guaranteed by competent managers truly at the service of a democratic State and of the public interest;
- a transformation of the agricultural structures, with a Land Reform that puts an end to big landownership.
- a patriotic policy in international relations, which constantly asserts and defends the national interest in the treaties, agreements and negotiations to which Portugal is a party, namely in the EC.
The PCP is against reserving for Portugal the role of an appendage economy, a tool in the transnational corporations' capitalist accumulation strategies and in the more developed capitalist countries' economic policies. For the PCP, it is necessary to have a policy which considers that Portugal's integration in the EC restricts, but does not prevent, the country's economic development. This means implementing a domestic policy which, without ignoring integration, can respect the country's identity and interests, the specificity of its economy and in particular its agriculture, ensure a correct allocation of funds and an effective transfer of technology to favour the economy's modernisation and development, and guarantee and strengthen working people's rights.
5. Sectoral policies must implement this non-monopolist development strategy and its key guidelines, in order to secure the goals of the economic policy for an advanced democracy, in accordance with the principles which have been established.
6. Science and technology policy must have as its goals to enhance the value of national resources, to increase production in both quantity and quality, to raise labour productivity, to save energy and raw materials, to protect and conserve the environment . For this it will be necessary to:
Closely coordinate the Research, Development and Testing (RD&T) policy with the development of the national productive forces, with the economic, education and professional training policies, and democratise and adapt the National Scientific and Technological System;
- Draw up a National Multi-Year Science and Technology Budget and Plan;
- Promote the use of technology in economic activities;
- Increase the number of scientific workers and the financial resources allocated to this end;
- Make use of the benefits and possibilities of international corporation.
7. Financial policy must be subordinated and adapted to the productive sphere's financing and development requirements. Its main directions shall be:
- to protect the country's financial balance (both internal and external);
- to manage the main financial mechanisms (budget and fiscal policy, monetary policy and exchange policy) in an integrated fashion;
- to achieve efficiency in finance administration and in managing financial instruments and institutions;
- to promote savings and mobilise them for productive purposes.
8. The energy policy's main goals must be to improve the efficiency of energy use in the various sectors, and to reduce the energy deficit. For this, it will be necessary to:
- increase domestic energy production, through adequate use of endogenous resources, and diversify the energy sources used and the geographic sources of imported raw materials;
promote a rational use of energy;
- protect the ecological balance and safeguard the population's safety;
- step up the use of new sources of energy, particularly renewable ones.
9. Industrial policy shall seek to overcome the structural shortcomings and modernise the industrial sector, making it a coherent part of an overall development policy. Major directions of this policy will be:
- To promote industrial production, using and valuing natural resources, especially in sectors with a multiplying effect on the productive apparatus and with high added value, and on the implementation of national projects of strategic interest;
- Organising and protecting national industry, particularly through reorganisation, recovery and redeployment programmes for sectors with decreasing demands and companies with difficulties and through the diversification of production and measures to stimulate industrial quality;
- Modernizing and increasing productivity in the extractive and processing industries, in particular through structural changes, renewal of equipment and innovation of processes and products;
- Promoting cores of production-supporting "service industries" which help sustain the national industry's necessary reconversion of specialisation and industries to process and recycle waste.
10. Agricultural and rural development have as their main goal to develop and rapidly modernise Portuguese agriculture, improve life in the countryside, increase agricultural, livestock and forestry production and productivity, improve the level of self-supply of basic foodstuffs, achieve greater increases for those products in which Portugal may have comparative advantages and preserve the rural world. These major goals require:
Carrying out an Agrarian Reform which transforms the land property structure by abolishing big landed estates (latifundios) and handing over the land to collective farms/cooperatives and to small-scale farmers, improving small farms' economic and productive organisation, namely by encouraging producers' associations, by increasing tenant farmers' rights, and by guaranteeing that common lands are possessed, used and managed by local communities;
- Reorganising commercial circuits and developing food and forestry industries;
- Providing preferential technical and financial support for the modernisation of small and medium-scale farms and agricultural cooperatives;
- A full and integrated use and conservation of water, agricultural and forest resources, and farm lands; a forest management giving priority to multiple use, local economies and the environmental role of forests;
- Effective recognition by the EC of the specific nature of Portuguese agriculture, with the inherent assistance policies;
- Preserving agricultural production, promoting other economic activities and renewing infrastructures and social equipment which may promote living conditions in a rural environment.
11. The fisheries policy must seek to develop national fish production, putting an end to the gradual reduction of activity in that sector. It must be based on the following main tenets:
- Maximising the national fleet's use of Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) resources; fishing activity within the territorial waters must be its prerogative and national fishing in other waters must be defended;
- Intensifying research to identify, develop, rationally manage and protect resources;
- Taking steps to assist in developing the various fleets and, in particular, the local and coastal fleets, fomenting aquaculture and preserving the canning industry;
- Supporting producers' efforts in the marketing of fisheries produce.
12. The transport policy will envisage development and be based on the following major tenets:
- Integrated planning of the system, in coordination with the various branches of the economy and with the territory's spatial organisation, instituting coordinated management in the larger urban areas and taking into account environmental impacts;
- Developing resources, in terms of infrastructures, rolling stock and equipment and optimizing management systems;
- Improving competitiveness, assist the re-equipment and support the participation of national transport in foreign traffic, particularly in the context of intra-EC transport.
13. Communications and telecommunications policy requires a reorganisation of the sector's structure with a view to achieving integrated planning and management coordination; it shall seek to modernise economic activities, and be based on the following main points:
- Ensuring economically and socially necessary services;
- Extending and modernising the national telecommunications network, and its interconnection to international networks, through a judicious process of technological innovation, which can provide technically and economically advantageous solutions;
- Extending and restructuring the coverage of the postal service;
- Maximising the use of national research and technology, and coordinating all relevant entities: industry, services, research centres, universities.
14. Tourism policy shall seek to enhance tourism's role in national and regional development, and to meet the population's leisure requirements. It shall be based on:
- Balanced and orderly growth, enhancing and protecting natural resources and historical heritage, with cultural and environmental protection of the main tourist centres;
- Diversification of tourist markets and flows, valuing the domestic market and protecting the quality of tourist services.
15. The domestic trade policy must seek to enhance national and regional economic development, namely by:
- Adapting the commercial structures to the requirements of the community and of urban development;
- Establishing (or reconverting) distribution circuits in order to make them more flexible, transparent and effective;
- Protecting traditional independent commerce and regulating major retail trade outlets and chains;
- Supporting consumer cooperatives, small and medium-scale commerce, and the various types of small-scale shopkeepers' associations, assisting their reorganisation and modernisation, and enabling them to effectively play their role within the community.
16. Foreign trade policy must seek to reduce the trade balance deficit, and to promote and help market domestic produce. These central goals require an active protection of national interests within [European] Community institutions and other international bodies, a diversification of foreign economic relations, in particular with countries having Portuguese as an official language.
17. Portugal' s economic development based on a mixed economy is an integral and basic part of the advanced democracy that the PCP submits to the Portuguese people. Social progress, the creation of a material base for the construction of a democratic society, and the steadfast defence of national independence all depend on the success of this development.
3º. A social policy to provide better living conditions for the people
1. The main goals of social policy in the advanced democracy proposed by the PCP are providing better material and spiritual living conditions for workers and the vast majority of the Portuguese people, and eliminating the most serious social inequalities and injustices, as well as the scourges of unemployment, poverty, prostitution, drugs and crime, thus ensuring for the Portuguese people living standards and material and cultural welfare according to the possibilities and potential arising out of the productive forces' contemporary level of development.
Better material and spiritual living conditions for the Portuguese people and economic development are two indissociably complementary goals of the democratic policy submitted by the PCP to the Portuguese people.
Under monopoly capitalism, economic development is based on the exploitation of working people and on acute social inequalities. In the advanced democracy proposed by the PCP, better living and working conditions for the people are not only compatible with, but essential for, economic development.
2. The social rights of working people and of all citizens are viewed as fundamental rights, and are part and parcel of the advanced democracy proposed to the Portuguese people by the PCP.
The following shall be guaranteed as essential social rights:
- Right to employment;
- Right to social security;
- Right to health care;
- Right to education and schooling, to culture and sports;
- Right to a home;
- Right to a healthy and ecologically balanced environment;
- Right to protection and security for communities;
- Equality for women;
- Right to personal and professional satisfaction for young people;
- Right of children to harmonious development;
- Right to a dignified life for elderly persons and pensioners;
- Right of disabled people to a life integrated within society;
- Right of emigrants to have their interests protected;
- Right of immigrants and ethnic minorities to have their interests protected.
The implementation and effective materialisation of these essential social rights are necessary to ensure a dignified existence for all citizens and to achieve a fairer society.
3. The right to employment is essential for citizens to be able to enjoy their economic, social and cultural rights, and for their formation, free development and personal satisfaction. Inseparable elements of the right to employment are fair pay, job security, health and safety at work, training, and the physical and psychological well-being of workers.
The right to employment shall be ensured by:
- An employment-generating economic development policy;
- Forbidding dismissals without just cause or harassment on ground of sex, political beliefs, religious creeds or activity in trade unions or Workers' Councils;
- A system of continuous cultural, technical and professional training, ensuring professional qualification, promotion and retraining for working people;
- Limiting the use of short-term contracts and other forms of non-permanent employment to exceptional situations;
- Eliminating all forms of illegal labour;
- An incomes policy that will increase labour's share in the distribution of national wealth and ensure a continuous improvement in working people's living standards;
- Fair remuneration of labour, respecting the principle of "equal pay for equal work";
- Reducing and organising working hours so that working people may better enjoy cultural and leisure activities.
4. The right to social security seeks to protect citizens lacking or having insufficient means of subsistence or working ability, in particular due to illness, disability, unemployment or old age. The State shall be responsible for the social security system.
The right to social security shall be guaranteed by:
- An integrated, decentralised and participatory system, based on the principles of universality, singleness, equality and solidarity;
- Participation of the trade-union movement and of users' representative organisations in establishing policy and in managing the social security system;
- Raising benefits and pensions and extending and improving social services so as to make it possible to provide for the needs of citizens and families.
5. The right to health care seeks to create conditions for the Portuguese people's physical, mental and social welfare. To this effect, it will incorporate scientific and technological advances, promote health, prevent diseases and provide for rehabilitation.
- The right to health care shall be ensured by:
- A universal, general and free-of-charge National Health Service, with an efficient, decentralised and participatory management;
- A general overhaul of health services, promoting and encouraging their quality and effectiveness;
- Regionalizing and decentralising services that provide health care, taking geographic, demographic and epidemiological realities into account, and ensuring increasing equality of coverage and access by the population;
- Correct planning, organisation, management and coordination between the various levels and services involved in health care, with the participation of health sector workers and of the community;
- Adopting a policy giving priority to promoting health and preventing disease, providing the necessary resources to address the major public health problems, according to carefully defined and continuously updated priorities.
6. The right to education and schooling, to culture and sports is the right of each and every individual to knowledge and to creativity, to fully and harmoniously develop his/her potential, ability and vocations and civic awareness.
The right to education and schooling, to culture and sports shall be guaranteed by:
- A policy that considers education, science and culture as strategic directions for Portugal's integrated development; that takes into account the contemporary diversity in education and training processes and in the scope of problems they have to cater for, ranging from professional competence and qualification, to humanistic and scientific/technical culture, to innovation and creation, to civic and human values; that attend to all of the Portuguese population, developing a system of permanent education which integrates and balances initial education with continuous training and education for adults; guaranteeing top-quality education for all Portuguese people and heightening the population's cultural level, providing a balanced overall enhancement for human beings to assert their full and creative citizenship in a democratic society;
- An educational system stressing a democratically managed public education, endowed with goals, structures, programmes and financial and human resources enabling it to implement citizens' right to an education, to provide equal opportunities for access and promotion in schools for all Portuguese people and all levels of schooling; to eradicate illiteracy; to provide universal and compulsory basic schooling; to cover the country with a public pre-school education network; to establish a connection between the school system's goals and social, cultural and economic activities; to contribute to increase the Portuguese people' s labour qualifications;
- Implementing a sports system which would integrate the various structures involved in sports (central and local government, associations, clubs and schools) provide sports practitioners with working conditions enabling their progress and provide the general population with access to the various sports at various levels, thus contributing to their development and fulfilment;
- Continuous support and incentive for cultural production, activities and agents, democratising culture and access to the enjoyment and creation of culture.
7. The right to a home guaranteeing for citizens and families dwelling adequate to their needs, ensuring their well being, privacy and quality of life.
The right to a home shall be ensured by:
- Implementing a policy to tackle the lack of housing, and applying a land and territorial management policy that can generate high-quality, speculation-free urban areas, land use and infrastructures;
The State shouldering its responsibilities, specifically by launching major housing programmes for less well-off citizens, encouraging controlled-price housing; an effective subsidised credits policy, decentralising functions and allocating resources to municipalities;
- The convergence of public, private and cooperative enterprise's efforts; incentives to restore historical inner-cities, run-down areas and illegal buildings, with the elimination of shanty towns; the promotion of a market for rented houses and the building of socially-determined rented housing.
8. The right to a healthy and ecologically balanced environment, seeking to guarantee that each citizen and each community can live in harmony with the natural environment - with its resources and species - as an essential condition for the physical and psychological equilibrium of future generations.
The right to a healthy, ecologically balanced environment shall be ensured:
- by joint planning and analysis of all sectoral and land use policies, of their impact on natural resources and the environment and on land use and occupation;
- by the prevention of forest fires and anti-desertification policies for large parts of the country, by safeguarding ecologically sensitive areas and protected areas, by opting to specialise in environment-protecting production and by developing civic awareness on environmental protection;
- by rational, integrated and democratically participated management of ecosystems' natural resources, with strict monitoring of their self-renewing capability;
- through a nationally and internationally coordinated struggle against situations of serious environmental deterioration, in particular river and coastal pollution;
- by the coordinated extension of sewage networks, energy grid, and air, soil and water pollution control networks to the whole of the nation's territory;
- by an urban policy providing city populations with a balanced and healthy urban environment;
- by encouraging scientific work on the environment and related issues, publicising the work produced, and encouraging scientists' participation in defining and following up research;
- by publicising ecological issues through the school system.
9. Communities' rights to peace and safety is a very important issue, particularly in areas of urban growth.
Communities' right to peace and safety shall be guaranteed:
- by an integrated development policy, improving citizens' living standards;
- by allocating more resources to, and improving the operational capability of, policing and crime investigation, giving priority to prevention;
- by a struggle against crime, criminal associations, drug trafficking, violence and corruption;
- by developing relationships between security forces, local governments, communities, schools, youth organisations, the Public Prosecution and other bodies, with a view to preventing and fighting crime;
- by reorganising the security forces, optimising their ability to react, based on their definition as civilian, judiciary-controlled bodies, and on the recognition of their workers' rights;
- by guaranteeing the right to assistance in case of large-scale accidents, catastrophes or hazards, be they natural or technological, through a veritable national civil protection system that is operational, participatory and not cabinet-dependent.
10. Equality for women, which is closely associated with women's emancipation struggles, is a pre-condition for democratising and humanising society and for the free development of women's creative and productive capabilities.
- Equal rights for women shall be ensured by:
- legislation providing for the implementation of women's rights in all spheres of society, forbidding and punishing any discrimination;
- the right to work with equal opportunities in terms of access, professional training and promotion, implementing the "equal pay for equal work" principle;
- effectively recognising maternity and paternity as eminently social functions;
- recognising equal family rights and duties for men and women, including raising and educating their children;
- developing educational and cultural policies aimed at changing mentalities and at establishing family relationships based on free choice and on love and solidarity among its members;
- creating objective and subjective conditions for an adequate social consciousness in which men and women are both viewed as human beings with full rights and duties.
11. The right of young people to personal and professional fulfilment and to actively participate in society includes as an essential element effective guarantees for their economic, social and cultural rights.
The rights of young people shall be guaranteed by:
- effectively mandatory and free schooling, and equal opportunities of access to the various levels of education, and to promotions;
- access to jobs and professional training and promotions, and support for the continuation and completion of studies for those already working;
- pay according to the "equal pay for equal work" principle;
- creating the necessary conditions to find a home and build a family when they so wish;
- creating conditions for cultural creation and enjoyment, to practice sports and usefully spend one's leisure time;
- supporting the development of the youth movement, respecting its identity and specific traits;
- creating conditions for a dignified life, with prevention of drug addiction, struggle against poverty and juvenile delinquency.
12. The right of children to harmonious development and for respect for their individual identity is essential to a happy childhood and a pre-condition for the formation of physically, intellectually and emotionally healthy citizens.
The rights of children shall be ensured by:
- a mother and child care system, enhancing child- and family-support structures;
- sufficient and adequate nourishment, health care and education, aiming at success in school and education;
- measures for protection and special care, taking into account their level of affective, physical, psychological and intellectual development, and special care in case of specific difficulties;
- social and legal protection against all forms of arbitrariness, violence and exploitation, specifically forbidding and punishing the use of child labour;
- raising awareness of the need to respect children within society.
13. The rights of elderly and retired people and pensioners, implemented through a specific policy that takes into account their aspirations, with a view to provide them with a dignified life, security in old age, and full integration and participation in society.
The rights of elderly and retired people and pensioners shall be protected by:
- retirement pensions enabling them to meet their essential needs and ensuring their independence and dignity;
- providing adequate health services;
- social support and leisure-time support, through adequate infrastructures and support services;
14. The rights of disabled persons will provide them with the possibility of leading an independent and socially useful life, suppressing the barriers that prevent their integration in society with full citizenship rights.
The rights of disabled persons shall be ensured by:
- correct prevention, health care and rehabilitation policies geared toward reintegration at work;
- improving benefit schemes and social security;
- specific measures for schooling and professional training, and guaranteed jobs;
- adopting legislation and administrative measures for the elimination of architectural and other barriers;
- establishing programmes for usefully spending leisure time, as well as cultural and physical education and sports programmes.
15. The right of emigrants to protection of their basic interests arises out of the great significance of emigration in society, out of the discrimination and lack of protection that emigrants suffer.
Emigrants' rights shall be guaranteed by:
- efficient work by consulates, embassies, and other specific protection and support services both in the host countries and in Portugal;
- applying bilateral and multilateral Conventions and Agreements signed by the Portuguese State in those cases that require upholding the rights of emigrants and their families;
- taking steps to encourage the teaching of Portuguese and promote the Portuguese language and culture abroad;
- emigrants' participation in finding solutions for their problems, and respect for their associations;
- supporting their return home, specifically through measures to channel savings to their regions of origin, and to promote development projects , in particular regional ones.
16. The right of immigrants and ethnic minorities to the protection of their interests as part of a policy of friendship and cooperation among all peoples and of respect for all human beings.
The rights of immigrants and ethnic minorities shall be ensured by:
- measures protecting the use of their languages and cultures;
- adopting measures to facilitate their integration into Portuguese society, respecting their cultural specificity;
- extending social and legal protection schemes, on a par with Portuguese workers;
- fighting all expressions of racism and xenophobia.
17. It is not enough for the Law to recognise the social rights of working people and of all citizens. A democratic policy - in its direction and implementation - must guarantee them in practice.
These fundamental rights implicitly encompass material and cultural well-being, dignity and genuine improvement in the living conditions of working people and of all citizens. They are a basic principle of the advanced democracy which the PCP proposes.
4º. cultural policy that guarantees access to the creation and enjoyment of culture
1. The cultural policy which the PCP submits to the Portuguese people consists of the true exercise of their cultural rights, of creating conditions for the full development of individuals' and of society's cultural values. It is based on, and aims at, raising the level of creative participation of working people and citizens generally, as well as of their organisations, in the various spheres of social life. It also aims at teaching democratic values.
In today's world, and also in Portugal, culture is increasingly important in the life of society.
The cultural democracy which the PCP advocates is inseparable from democracy in its political, economic and social dimensions - the latter being material pre-conditions essential for the attainment of a cultural democracy. Being rooted in society's movement and constituting a component of people's life, cultural democracy is one of the factors for the transformation of society. The exercise of cultural rights and the struggle for their general implementation and reinforcement are factors for democracy as a whole.
2. The cultural democracy which the PCP advocates includes:
Making it possible for everyone to enjoy cultural products and activities, eliminating all economic, social, sex and regional discrimination in the access to knowledge and cultural activities:
- Building up a progressive social consciousness which will uphold the humanistic values of Freedom, Equality, Tolerance, Solidarity, Democracy and Peace;
- Acknowledging and enhancing the social function of those who work in the cultural sphere and of their organisations, constantly improving their training and working conditions, as well as providing effective support for young artists;
- Supporting the free development of popular forms of creating and enjoying culture, of cultural association and cultural life, recognising and enhancing their dynamic role in the formation of a national identity;
- Creating the indispensable material and spiritual conditions for the development of cultural creation, production, dissemination and enjoyment, rejecting their subordination to commercial criteria and taking into account scientific controversy and the diversity of aesthetic opinions.
3. The main cultural policy guidelines are:
- Free cultural expression and enhancement of individual capabilities and raising the population's level of knowledge and cultural requirements;
- Eradication of complete illiteracy and struggle against functional illiteracy;
- A school system undergoing change towards development and modernisation, towards cultural emancipation and democratic teaching methods, leading to continuing education; a school system supported and made possible, in its cultural function, by other means of training and socio-cultural agents, ranging from scientific, technical and artistic institutions, to the mass media and community organisations;
- A policy to enhance the cultural and social role of scientific and technological development;
- Expansion of artistic learning and education, and of social and cultural activities;
- A physical education and sports policy viewed as a means of human enhancement and a factor of personality development and democratisation of social life;
- Environmental, land use and urban policies allowing for a daily life of peace and well-being, for the existence of places where people can get together and enjoy their leisure time, respecting the preservation of natural and cultural heritage as well as of urban areas of historic value;
- the enhancement of the mass media's cultural role, with more accurate and better quality information, with the encouragement, integration and promotion of literary, artistic, scientific and cultural production, taking into account the specific nature of each medium;
- Decentralisation and regionalization of productive structures and of cultural equipment and services, with the aim of eliminating regional inequalities and making a creative assertion of each region's specific traits; allocation of material and human resources which will make it possible for the local authorities to act upon the cultural sphere;
- Safeguard, study and publicization of the cultural heritage, be it national, regional or local, erudite or popular, traditional or current;
- Interchange with the other peoples of Europe and the world, opening up to and creatively incorporating Humanity's fundamental cultural values, struggle against cultural colonisation, international promotion of the Portuguese culture and language, in close cooperation with the other countries that use the Portuguese language.
4. The democratic State bears fundamental responsibility for cultural democracy, but it can only be built by combining the State's action with collective and individual participation and creativity.
Cultural democracy is a factor of political democracy whose potential can only emerge if the population's professional training and cultural life are extended and enhanced. It is a factor of economic democracy, of development and modernisation because it qualifies the main productive force: human labour. It is a factor of social democracy because it is a form of increased participation in society's life, on the part of those workers, social classes and groups most vitally interested in democracy. It is a factor of national sovereignty because it helps to build up a national identity, in an open and active process, interacting with world culture.
The cultural democracy which the PCP submits to the Portuguese people is a factor of individual, social and national emancipation, a factor of multi-faceted development of the individual and of society, a powerful incentive to dialogue among cultures.
1. Portugal's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity are fundamental and inalienable values of the people, the nation and the State.
For centuries, there have been ties of dependence on foreign nations. In this century, Portugal's ties of dependence on imperialism have represented powerful obstacles to a development in accordance with national interests, and are factors of involvement in foreign matters which run counter to national interests.
Integration in political, economic, military and security terms, depriving Portugal of essential levers of its sovereignty and independence and subordinating it to the dominant countries' transnational corporations, is unacceptable and must be opposed.
In the same way and with the same engagement with which it rejects autarchic and isolationist solutions, chauvinism, nationalism and racism, the PCP rejects federalist eurocracies which reduce national sovereignty and impoverish democracy.
The PCP rejects a Common Foreign and Security Policy which, supra-nationally seeks to enshrine the European Union's foreign policy as an entity under International Law, increasingly replacing member states in the definition and implemention of foreign, defense and security policies.
With the Maastricht Summit draft, what was sought was not closer cooperation between European States within the framework of the Economic Communities, to which Portugal belongs, but a departure from building a Europe based on free nations and sovereign and independent States, opting instead for a federalist-based "European Union", with the ensuing loss of political autonomy, independence, and national sovereignty.
The PCP will struggle for a [European] Community of effective cooperation between free nations and sovereign States, and stands for building a complete Europe of peace, cooperation among workers, peoples and nations, for building a continent which can be a factor of security and social progress the world over. This is contrary to an EC shaped by the big monopolies' interests and enclosed within a political-military bloc. One of the strongest demands emerging out of the changing world in which we live, is not one of costly surrenders of sovereignty or of impoverishing uniformisation and greater distance between decision-making centres and citizens, but one of vivid assertion of the richness of difference, of national identities, of recognition of nations' right to a sovereign political power structure, of aspiring to equal rights and new forms of mutually advantageous and reciprocally enriching cooperation.
2. The PCP will continue to guide its work, both within the institutions and outside them, by the defense of national interests, by limiting the negative aspects and strengthening the positive prospects that can make it possible to:
- harmoniously and speedily develop the nation within the framework of building a Europe of solidarity, open to the world, with priority for the social dimension and for a true convergence of economies;
- ensure a more advantageous specialisation of production for our country and an intensification of economic cooperation;
- ensure more EU funds, to be applied with a view to developing the country and not to supporting illegitimate interests;
- actually closing the gap between the various countries' level of development, which implies that the principle of "economic and social cohesion" is to be considered as one of the EC's fundamental goals, and not as a demagogic formula devoid of any real content;
- preserve Portuguese cultural identity and forms of cultural, technical and artistic exchange that respect the national language and values;
- democratise of European institutions;
- ensure an independent and positive role for the EC on major international issues, particularly in favour of disarmament, of collective security and peace in Europe and the world, countering the goal of turning it into an imperialist political-military bloc for interfering in the internal affairs of other States, and promoting cooperation, human, cultural and other exchanges between the peoples and States of all Europe;
- ensure active cooperation and common action by the workers' and people's movement, by communist parties and other democratic forces in EC countries.
3. In the political-military sphere, considering the developments in the international situation, Portugal's participation in NATO and the WEU must be reconsidered, together with the military agreements with the USA, Germany and France concerning foreign military bases in Portugal, which have led to stronger ties of dependence and seriously condition national independence and sovereignty.
Portugal is vitally interested in the disarmament process and in stronger international mechanisms of collective security.
Portugal, in its relations with NATO, must be guided by the goal of totally dismantling all political-military alliances. In this respect, Portugal should stand for deactivating NATO's military structure, and gradually detach from it.
In the framework of Europe, Portugal should counter the construction of any political-military bloc - via the WEU, or "EEC militarisation", or otherwise - leading to the transformation of Europe into a military power.
The country does not need, nor is it in its interest to have, any military integration strategically geared toward aggressive interventions in Europe or other regions of the globe.
Portugal should involve itself actively in institutionalising the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE) as the true system of collective security and cooperation in Europe, countering attempts to hegemonise and use it as a tool.
In a complex and unstable international framework, it is even more necessary for Portugal to adopt a political view of guaranteeing the national territory's integrity, political-military decision-making autonomy, national sovereignty and security for the Portuguese people and Portugal, making its own specific contribution toward positive developments in international relations, eliminating the nuclear threat and safeguarding world peace.
4. The following are fundamental elements of Portuguese independence and sovereignty:
- Economic independence ensuring - within a framework of international interdependence and cooperation, and specifically with the current EEC membership - national ownership of strategic resources and economic sectors, a reduction of the foreign deficit in sectors leading to greater vulnerability, an increase in production, a reduction of the foreign debt, participation in the international division of labour in a non-subordinate way which - with control over the production process - will render foreign diktats unfeasible.
- A national definition of defense policy, guaranteeing autonomy in the adoption of fundamental strategic concepts, independence of the Portuguese Armed Forces from any external control or interference, their non-integration and non-involvement in multinational forces and aggressive interventions, prior decision and national control over the use by foreign forces of the country's territory, air space and maritime zones - banning their use for aggressive operations and outer space militarization projects, or as bases for the installation, deployment or transit of any kind of nuclear weapons;
- Establishment of domestic security policies and measures, not permitting foreign command of national forces or security services nor the activity of foreign or supranational security services or forces on Portuguese soil, while safeguarding the necessary international cooperation in fighting crime;
- Autonomy of decisions and diplomatic relations, without any subordination to external orders or demands, guaranteeing that they are conducted in accordance with the aims of upholding national interests, cooperation, friendship and solidarity with all peoples, peace and security;
- The safeguard and development of Portuguese culture ensuring - within the framework of a necessary increase in interchange with other peoples and cultures and of a growing internationalisation of the mass media - the preservation of the Portuguese people's cultural identity and the enhancement of its international assertion;
- National development of science and technology securing, within the network of international cooperation and interchange, a science and technology policy geared toward the specific problems of Portugal's integrated development, equitable terms in the processes of exchanging knowledge and a balanced technological exchange with other countries under conditions of equality and reciprocity.
5. In the framework of these general guidelines, Portugal will develop, in the advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century which the PCP submits to the Portuguese people, a many-faceted foreign policy of peace, friendship and cooperation with all peoples, having as its fundamental tenets:
- Relations with the EC based on the essential principles of mutually advantageous cooperation, safeguard of national interests, culture and sovereignty, development of balanced and non-discriminatory relations among its member states and with all countries and peoples;
- Relations with all other countries of Europe, as well as with the USA, Canada and Japan, based on the principles of equality, reciprocity of advantages, mutual respect and non-interference in internal matters;
- Relations of privileged friendship and cooperation with Angola, Mozambique, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau and São Tomé e Príncipe (without interference or neo-colonialist ambitions), as well as with Brazil.
- Relations of friendship and cooperation with socialist countries, realising their true potential for mutually advantageous cooperation;
- Relations with the countries of Latin America, Africa and Asia, valuing historical and cultural factors, and active cooperation toward solving the serious problems that afflict the so-called Third-World and all of Humankind;
- Relations with the Arab countries, particularly in the Mahgreb and Eastern Mediterranean, geared toward turning the Mediterranean into an area of peace and cooperation;
- Active solidarity with all peoples who are fighting for their freedom, for national independence and social progress, against imperialism, colonialism, fascism, racism, apartheid and Zionism, assuming full responsibility before the people of East Timor, in terms of ensuring their self-determination and independence;
- Active participation in all international forums in which Portugal participates, particularly the UN and its agencies, in order to help solve Humanity's global problems - specifically, the defense of peace, the struggle against hunger, poverty and underdevelopment, disease and drug addiction, the protection and conservation of the environment, the creation of a new international information order; stressing the UN's role, fighting for its democratization and opposing its instrumentalization by the great powers which seek to interfere in the internal affairs of peoples;
- Engagement in the creation of a new international economic order directed to overcoming unequal terms of trade, over-exploitation of resources, the huge imbalances and discriminations and the devastating effects of the foreign debt which hang over many dozens of countries. This new international economic order will, by putting an end to neo-colonialism, secure well-being for all peoples, guarantee sustained development, fulfill present needs without jeopardising the future of coming generations;
- Actively contributing to the creation of a Europe of peace, progress, friendship and cooperation among sovereign peoples and nations with equal rights, advancing the disarmament process, dissolving all political-military blocs, creating a collective security system that respects and guarantees the sovereignty of States and freedom of choice for peoples, realising the CSCE's potential, protecting it from attempts to deface and manipulate it.
6. In the advanced democracy which the PCP proposes for the threshold of the 21st century, Portugal will make a positive contribution towards solving the contemporary world's major problems, along the path to peace and social progress. Portugal will exercise its full right to decide on its own economic, social and political system, its own domestic and foreign policy, its future and its destiny.
The advanced democracy that the PCP advocates - which includes a design for a regime and a definition of democratic policy - is characterised mainly by being a project for a society which entirely corresponds to the people's interests and the country's requirements, on the threshold of the 21st century.
The construction of an advanced democracy is therefore a process involving the transformation of life and society. Its success requires not only solutions on an institutional, political and governmental level, but also a creative effort and collective commitment on the part of the Portuguese workers and people.
The continuing daily struggle in defense of the people's and the country's interests, the steadfast and persistent fight against right-wing policies, the strengthening of working-class unity, the commitment to form a broad militant social front, the steps forward which have been taken in the convergence and unity of democrats and patriots, the conjunction of the electoral and institutional struggle with the mass struggle - a determining factor in the evolution of the nation's life - and the implementation of progressive political solutions are all part and parcel of the struggle for an advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century.
Strengthening the PCP's social, political and electoral influence, and securing its participation in the country's government are decisive pre-conditions for the construction of an advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century.
III - SOCIALISM: PORTUGAL'S FUTURE
The advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century which the PCP proposes to the Portuguese people seeks to solve many of the most serious existing problems. But the liquidation of capitalist exploitation - the general and effective demise of social discrimination, inequalities, injustices and scourges - is an historic task that can only be materialized with a socialist revolution.
Just as the PCP Programme - adopted in 1965 and ratified with amendments in 1974 at the 7th (Extraordinary) Congress - stressed that the full implementation of the democratic and national revolution would create favourable conditions for the evolution of Portuguese society toward Socialism, so too, in proposing in its Programme an advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century, the PCP considers that the implementation of such a project will create conditions conducive to a development of Portuguese society toward socialism. The socialist society that the PCP proposes - as a goal and prospect - to the Portuguese people, embodies and elaborates upon the essential economic, social, political and cultural components of the advanced democracy.
The social and political process leading to socialism does not depend merely on the will and action of those forces that wish to promote it. It also depends, among other factors, on the action and forms of resistance of those forces that oppose it. In Portugal on the threshold of the 21st century, the road to socialism lies in the struggle to expand democracy.
The working class vanguard's action, the struggle of workers, the masses of the people, the policies followed by the institutions and the State, the more or less democratic character of elections, the social structure's development, the line-up of class forces, the international situation, the Party's ability to win the masses over to its Programme, are all essential elements that will determine the specifics of the society's process of socialist transformation.
20th Century - The Building of a New Society
1. The 20th century remains inscribed in Humanity's history as a turning point in Human society, sparked off by the October Socialist Revolution and by the establishment of the first workers' and peasants' State. Huge steps in the liberation process of workers and peoples have been taken with socialist revolutions, with the defeat of Nazi-fascism, with the downfall of colonialism, with the achievement of independence by peoples subjected to the colonial yoke for centuries, with the achievement of basic rights and freedoms by the workers of capitalist countries.
It was an inspiring revolutionary undertaking - in an uneven and obstacle-ridden process - which turned out to be lengthier and more complex than its leaders had predicted, subject to fatal distortions that led to the reversibility of the whole process. It was a process seeking to implement, and to a great extend actually implementing, just and heartfelt yearnings of the vast majority of Humankind - of all those who are exploited, oppressed or discriminated against by virtue of class, race, sex or ideals.
Following thousands of years of societies whose social and economic systems and whose development were always based on the exploitation of some classes by other classes - on the exploitation of those who work and constitute the vast majority of peoples by a minority wielding the means of production, the State and political power - socialist revolutions, with workers' power, have undertaken the construction of a new society where no one exploits or is exploited, without antagonistic classes, without social discrimination and injustice, a new society in which the people's material and spiritual well-being as well as economic, social, political and cultural democracy, are necessarily basic goals of all policies.
2. Capitalism has displayed a high degree of resistance and adaptability. Based on the scientific and technological revolution, on new technologies, on the internationalisation of the economy and its enhanced control by the transnationals, on the extension of the international division of labour and on the processes of integration, but also on neo-colonialism, the unbridled exploitation of the Third World and the intensification of workers' exploitation, capitalism has managed to ensure new thrusts to its development and to go on the offensive on a global level. But it has not solved, rather tends to make more acute, its internal contradictions: between capital and labour; between the social nature of production and the private appropriation of the means of production; between the monopolies and the non-monopolistic strata; between the developed capitalist countries and the so-called Third World; between imperialism's major poles. It has not solved, rather tends to make more acute, the environmental unbalances, threatening the Planet's eco-systems and the survival of future generations.
Capitalism and imperialism maintain and enhance their exploiting and aggressive nature. In the more developed countries, social ills are mounting and there is a growing concentration of wealth, which contrasts with vast areas of the Planet where many millions of human beings face hunger, the bleakest poverty, discrimination, injustice, exclusion, drugs, disease and death.
In the current stage of development of human societies, capitalism and imperialism are responsible for a violent contradiction between the immense potential for social progress - which labour, the activity and struggle of the masses of Humankind, and the scientific and technological revolution have opened up - and the persistence, and even deterioration, of major global problems such as hunger, social inequalities, ignorance, the risks of war and of destruction of our species.
3. At the end of the 20th century, the struggle for Socialism in the world suffered defeats of yet unpredictable consequences for the workers' and peoples' struggle against all forms of exploitation and oppression, with the disintegration of the USSR and of the regimes which existed in Eastern Europe.
The events have shown that in those countries, despite the major revolutionary changes and democratic achievements of an economic, social and cultural nature, certain historical circumstances gave rise to a "blueprint" which violated essential traits of a socialist society and deviated from, countered and confronted essential aspects of the Communist ideal. Instead of the political power of the people, there arose an excessively centralized power in the hands of a bureaucracy which was increasingly distant from the participation and will of the masses and ever less subject to mechanisms which could monitor its activity. Instead of an extension of political democracy, there was a growth of the State's authoritarian nature. Instead of an economy driven by the social property of the main means of production, there was an excessively statist economy, which gradually reduced incentives to the workers' commitment and to productivity. Instead of a Party with a democratic life, with roots in the masses and drawing revolutionary strength from them, there was a bureaucratic centralism based on an administrative imposition of decisions, both within the Party and in the State, which was made worse by the fusion and confusion between State and Party. Instead of a vivid and creative theory, there was dogmatization and instrumentalization.
Experience has thus shown that, in building a socialist society, the solutions which are adopted for the most diverse problems (economic forms of organization, management systems, structures of the State, social policies, people's participation, culture) must constantly be confronted with their results, ready to be corrected and changed when necessary, open to a permanent improvement and enrichment.
Experience also shows that the true exercise of power by the people, popular control and a permanent attention to expanding democracy are essential in order to prevent a distancing of those in power from the masses; the incorrect use of political power; the abuse of authority; the lack of touch of the policies and reality with the goals which Socialism defines and proclaims; deviations and deformations which are incompatible with that system's very nature.
The history of the 20th century shows, on the one hand, that major changes and achievements of historical proportions in building Socialism and true social progress are inseparable from the Communists' struggle; and it shows, on the other hand, that the critical assimilation of the revolutionary experiences, both positive and negative, is indispensable for those forces which seek to put an end, in their own countries, to all forms of exploitation and oppression, and to build a socialist society.
4. In assessing the prospects for the contemporary world's social and political evolution, it is necessary to take into account that whereas capitalism arose and asserted itself as the dominant system in a process which lasted for several centuries, socialism arose in the 20th century, and has only made its first historical advances during a few decades.
The capitalist system, which cannot solve Humankind's problems and ensure that the most profound yearnings and needs of the peoples are met, is historically doomed.
In a more or less long historical time span, through diversified paths and in a process which will necessarily imply redefinitions and the enrichment of the project, through the workers' and peoples' struggle for social and national emancipation, it is capitalism's replacement with socialism which continues to be a real possibility and the best prospect for Humanity's evolution, on this threshold of the 21st century.
Socialism: Portugal's future
1. It is based on the multiple aspects of Portugal's reality and revolutionary experience, and critically assimilating world-wide revolutionary experience, both in its correct actions and successes, as well as in its mistakes and defeats, that the PCP proposes to the Portuguese people, as a goal, the future construction of socialist society.
The PCP proposes as basic goals of the socialist revolution in Portugal abolishing the exploitation of man by man, creating a society without antagonistic classes and inspired by humanistic values, with democracy (viewed with its complementary facets: economic, social, political and cultural), the constant creative intervention of the masses in all aspects of the country's affairs, constantly heightening the level of material and spiritual well-being of working people and of people generally, ending social discrimination, inequality, injustices and social scoulges, effectively implementing equal rights for men and women and with the participation of youth in the country's affairs as a dynamic and creative social force.
2. To achieve these goals, the PCP advances the following as traits of socialist society in Portugal:
- In terms of the political system, working people's power, with permanent checks on the work of State bodies and forms of greater participation by the people, democratization of all the nation's affairs, guaranteed exercise of democratic liberties, including freedom of the press and of creating political parties; a legal order that protects citizen's rights, respects diverse opinions, social interests and aspirations, religious beliefs and practices; the holding of elections with strict abidance of the Law by the institutions of political power; intervention and participation of the working masses in the country's political and economic management through State institutions, through democratic local government and through class, trade-union, community, political and other organizations;
- In terms of the economic organisation, social ownership of the main means of production, planned management of the economy together with the initiative and direct participation of production units and workers, the coexistence of State-run, self-managed, cooperative, collective, family and individually-run forms of organization with private companies of various magnitudes, a full and definitive implementation of the Agrarian Reform fully respecting the will of farm workers and farmers, consideration of the market's role, harmonious development of the national economy's resources and branches, and of all regions, taking into account the environmental impact of development plans, the economy's dynamism and effectiveness based on the best achievements of scientific and technological progress.
- In the social sphere, the liberation of working people from all forms of oppression and exploitation, full employment, the remuneration of each according to his/her labour, the right to a job and in particular a guaranteed first job for young people, guaranteed material incentives for the development of production, respect for individual property acquired as a result of one's own labour, the establishment of social relationships based on respect for each citizen's dignity and personality, development of social services, the solution of the housing problem, generalized practice of sports and a healthy use of leisure time, environmental protection, erradication of the major social scourges such as hunger, illiteracy, poverty, pollution, drugs, prostitution, alcoholism and crime.
- In the cultural sphere, culturewill become a heritage, an instrument and an activity of all the people, there will be scientific and technological progress, expansion of artistic creation, encouragement of creativity, access of all to education and a high level of cultural democracy as a result of constantly merging the policies of the socialist State's institutions with individual and collective initiative, participation and creative activity.
- In the ethical sphere, the creation of a social and individual awareness in accordance with the ideals of freedom, of civic duty, of respect for human dignity and for nature, of solidarity, friendship and peace.
3. World revolutionary experience, as well as the experience of the Portuguese revolution, has already shown that in building a new society the initiative and creativity of the revolutionary forces and of the masses of the people have a huge and at times unexpected potential, and that the solutions adopted by the political power institutions besideshaving to be permanently subjected to institutional checks, must necessarily be borne out in practice and subjected to any changes and corrections required or suggested by reality or by the peoples' will.
Within the framework of its basic goals, the socialist system in Portugal will inevitably have pecularities and original traits arising not only out of the country's objective reality, but also out of the concrete aspects of the class struggle, of economic, social, cultural and political development, and of prevailing international circumstances.
4. On the horizon of social development lies Communism - progressive Humankind's age-old dream, a classless society of abundance, social equality, freedom and culture for all, a society of collective and individual initiative and creativity, of free and conscious working people in which labour will be not merely a source of wealth, but also a creative activity and a source of joy, freedom and personal enhancement and in which peace, health, culture, leisure, a balanced environment, collective action and the value of the individual will all be components of human happiness.
IV- The Party
1. Being a political party and a vanguard of the working class of all working people, the Portuguese Communist Party is a patriotic and internationalist Party.
- It is patriotic because it serves the people. With its class roots in Portugal's economic, social and cultural realities, it is part and parcel of the Portuguese society and Nation, it carries forward the progressive traditions of our History. It is a Party that serves the country.
- It is internationalist because it is a party of Portuguese working people, whose interests are the same as those of working people of other countries in the struggle against capitalist exploitation and for the emancipation of humankind. It stands in solidarity with revolutionary forces. It participates with full autonomy and independence in the diverse framework of world revolutionary and progressive forces, and particularly in the international Communist movement, which undergoes charges as the situation changes, in the world and in the various countries and regions. Its international relations and stands on issues draw inspiration from proletarian internationalism and it sees itself as a party of the universal cause of Human liberation.
2. It is a fact of history that the Portuguese Communist Party played a decisive role in the struggle against fascist dictatorship, in creating the social and political conditions that made possible the victory of the Armed Forces Movement's military uprising on 25 April 1974, in building and institutionalizing the new democratic regime - the regime enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic adopted by the Constituent Assembly in 1976. The PCP also played and continues to play a decisive role in defending Portuguese democracy and its gains, national independence and sovereignty.
While being a Party thoroughly engaged in the mass struggle, the PCP is at the same time a political force that is essential for the institutions to operate effectively and democratically and for the county to strengthen its democratic life. It participates actively in State institutions and structures. Having had a determining role in establishment of Local Government, it has done remarkable work in it, to serve the population. It contributes decisively, through the work of its members, to the valuable dynamism of many diverse social organizations, cultural institutions and people's structures.
The value of PCP's participation in the country's affairs arises out of the class nature of the Party and its policies, out of the correspondence between its goals and its struggle with the interests of the Portuguese people and of Portugal, out of its connection with the working people and with the masses of the people, and also out its organizational capability, its structure, its operation, its style of work, its knowledge of reality, its creativity, its unity and cohesiveness. Other factors that contribute to the PCP's prestige and influence are its respect for undertakings made before the people, as well as the honesty, consistency, moral and political uprightness and sense of responsibility that are the hallmarks of all its intervention in the country's life.
Internationally, the PCP's relations and intervention have been entirely at the service of the Portuguese people and of Portugal, of the cause of workers' and peoples' liberation, of the ideals of freedom, national independence, social progress, socialism and peace. The PCP invariably works for stronger cooperation, friendship and converging stances, initiatives and action among the great revolutionary forces of today's world.
3. The PCP organizes in its ranks industrial and office workers, intellectuals, technical workers, small and medium-scale farmers, small and medium-scale businesspersons in commerce, industry and services, men and women fighting against capitalist exploitation and oppression and for democracy, Socialism and Communism.
All those who accept the Party's Programme and Constitution, may be members of the Portuguese Communist Party. One of their essential duties is to actively participate in one of its organizations and pay their dues.
4. The Party's organizational structure and activity - as defined and elaborated upon in its Constitution - are based on principles which creatively developing democratic centralism, responding to new situations, and enhanced through experience, seek to ensure, simultaneously, a profound inner-Party democracy, a single general line and a single central leadership.
5. The following are fundamental organizational principles:
- Leading Party bodies, from the bottom to the top, are elected, and every collective is entitled to dismiss any person elected by it;
- Leading bodies are obliged to report regularly to their respective organizations on their work, and to carefully consider the opinions and criticisms issued by the latter as contributions to their own thinking and decisions;
- The decisions of higher-ranking bodies taken within their scope of responsibility are binding to those below them, which for their part are obliged to report to higher-ranking bodies on their work;
- Opinions are freely expressed and debated, seeking to guarantee the inclusion of individual contributions in the collective work, decisions and action of Party bodies and organizations;
- Everyone implements decisions taken by consensus or majority;
- Collective work and collective leadership;
- Decision-making powers and extensive scope for the initiative of all Party organisations within their scope of responsibility, considering the Party's Constitutional principles, political line and the decisions of higher-ranking bodies;
- Respect for the Party Constitution by all members; non-acceptability of fractions, that is, of the creation of organised groups of tendencies operating for their own proposals or political platforms.
The Party's organizational principles guarantee the participation of all members in drawing up the Party line, the effective responsibility of the leadership before the Party collective and of all organizations and members before the leadership, constructive debate with a free and frank expression of opinions, encouragement of organizations' and members' initiative, voluntary, conscious and responsible discipline, and unity - ideological, organizational and in action.
These principles constitute an essential foundation of the Party's strength, cohesiveness and discipline, of its connection to the working class and to the masses of the people, of its capability to intervene in the country's life.
Social and political life - in its constant mobility - requires of the Party a capability not only to follow and examine but also to react to new situations and effect transformations of reality.
Ideological steadfastness, consistency of principles, precision in the political line and goals which are established, capability and readiness to change them whenever it become necessary, are all compatible with great tactical flexibility.
The PCP's theoretical foundation is Marxism-Leninism, a materialistic and dialectical world view, a scientific tool to analyze reality, a guide to action which liaisons with practice, becomes richer and renewed through the unceasing progress of knowledge and experience.
In developing and critically assimilating Marx, Engels and Lenin's thinking, Marxism-Leninism is necessarily creative and therefore contrary to the crystallisation of theory, to dogmatisation, as well as to the opportunist revision of its principles and basic concepts. It embodies the experiences and teachings of the whole history of the working-class movement, of Communist parties, of the October Revolution, of the other socialist revolutions, of the undertakings to build a new society, of the national liberation movement, of democratic revolutions and of all progressive development in human society.
In Marxism-Leninism, the PCP has a tested tool with which to analyze new realities and new processes, to enhance thought, ideological struggle and theoretical debate, and to creatively discover concrete solutions to problems, and roads leading the peoples to a better future.
By monitoring reality, examining economic, social, political and cultural transformations and changes taking place in Portuguese society and in the world, by studying new phenomena and assessing and discerning their causes, meaning and consequences, the PCP establishes its political line and its short-, medium- and long-term tasks.
7. Because the PCP is entirely at the service of the people and the country, its program corresponds to the basic interests and most heartfelt aspirations of the working class and of all working people, of farmers, intellectuals, technical workers, small- and medium-scale businesspersons, of young people, women, pensioners, elderly people, disabled persons, of all progressive men and women.
In proposing an advanced democracy on the threshold of the 21st century, the PCP proclaims: This is the Programme which we submit to the Portuguese people. If you agree with it, then come and fight with the PCP for its implementation.
The struggle to implement the PCP's Programme, by will of the Portuguese people, is the road to freedom, democracy, national independence, peace and socialism.
It is the road that is in the interests of the Portuguese people and Nation.