EU gives Spain, Portugal more time on deficits

The European Commission has shied away from punishing Spain and Portugal over their excessive budget deficits.

The EU executive has the power to fine governments that consistently spend more than they receive in tax revenues.

Spain budget deficit stood at five percent of GDP last year; Madrid’s initial target had been 4.2 percent.

Portugal’s deficit was 4.4 percent, which is above the EU agreed limit of 3 percent.

Officials made do with a warning and the granting of more time to reduce deficits.