Most companies raise salaries below inflation
"Many families can no longer buy food by the end of the month" and, with rising interest rates and inflation, Pedro Soares dos Santos says he only sees "the scenario getting worse." The president of Jerónimo Martins, owner of the Pingo Doce chain, says that "Portugal has been in crisis since it entered the euro" and adds that "the country is not growing and has been slowly going backwards". "People are finally realizing this because inflation is messing with their pockets," says Soares dos Santos.
The manager says, in an interview with the Expresso newspaper, that "we like to blame the war, but it has only accelerated everything." The leader of the group, which also has operations in Poland and Colombia, points out that "Portugal is the country where we do the most promotions," a "model [that] has enormous weight because people have difficulties on a daily basis.
We are studying a new format for Pingo Doce. We have to make the offer more attractive to a people in difficulties. It's an adaptation to a new reality and will imply investments in the stores", says Pedro Soares dos Santos.
The inflationary scenario "is something that we already started to realize in September last year" and "only those who didn't want to see it, didn't see it". The manager underlines, however, that besides inflation "it is also the tax burden in which the middle class is the most harmed and the inability of companies to innovate and create wealth because the market has no purchasing power.
"I'm afraid of what's happening in Portugal right now," he remarks, adding that he sees 2023 with "a lot of concern in Portugal." "I see Portugal completely resigned and people becoming subsidiodependent, a sign of economic collapse," he concludes.