Portugal’s bailout plan’s terms to be discussed today

Finance minister to meet officials representing lenders to set conditions of rescue package.

Officials representing the IMF and the EU, Portugal's main lenders, are due to meet the country's finance minister, Fernando Teixeira Dos Santos, in Lisbon today to set the conditions of the country's rescue package.

Discussions are aimed at setting the conditions Portugal's bail out loans, which should cost up to £70bn. Support for the package in rich European nations such as Germany is crucial for the Portuguese, as they struggle with inexorably increasing borrowing costs in a period of dampened growth.

The EU's finance ministers have a series of priorities for the rescue package. These include increasing the country's competitiveness (one of its major flaws and an important cause of its current situation, according to analysts), a fiscal readjustment, and an effort on the financial sector's solvency.

Other propositions include a significant privatisation plan -- which could include the country's EU-funded road system.

The Portuguese people fear the meeting will usher an even harsher set of austerity measures than the ones which have already been applied by José Sócrates, the country's former Prime Minister and head of its caretaker government since his resignation as president on 23 March 2011.