As his victory became clear, Mr Passos Coelho said he would do “everything possible” to make sure Portugal honoured the terms of the bail-out.
“I want to guarantee to those who are watching us from abroad that Portugal does not intend to be a burden for the future to other countries that lent us the means that we needed today to face up to our responsibilities,” he said.
The victorious centre-right Social Democrats (PSD) led by Pedro Passos Coelho are expected to form a majority with the conservative CDS.
The new government must implement a demanding austerity programme as a condition for an EU bail-out. Exit polls gave the PSD between 37% and 42.5% of the vote, ahead of the Socialists who scored between 24.4% and 30%. “These are clear results which the Socialist Party wants to recognise. All the results point to a win for the PSD and a defeat for the Socialists,” Economy Minister Jose Vieira da Silva said.
In a much anticipated outcome, Portugal will vote to replace the caretaker Prime Minister Jose Socrates with opposition center-right Social Democrat Pedro Passos Coelho via maxkeiser.com