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Brazil's Senate approves 20-year spending freeze


12-14-2016 17:09 BJT

Brazil's Senate on Tuesday approved a 20-year freeze on government spending. The bill is the center-piece of austerity reforms aimed at restoring health to the country's troubled economy.

President Michel Temer says tough measures are needed to get Brazil's finances back under control. The country is in a deep recession with an unemployment rate at nearly 12 percent and high inflation.

Temer said during debate over the bill that the reforms were needed to improve Brazil over the long term. In addition to the spending cap, a separate pension reform measure has also been submitted to the Congress.

At the center of that reform is a minimum retirement age of 65 that's substantially higher than the current requirement. 

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