In order to pay its public sector debt of about 120% of the GNP to the financial markets (leaving aside the private sector debt), the Portuguese economy has to grow at a minimum rate of 2,5% per year. Without this rate of economic growth, the public debt will never be paid off.
Bearing in mind this reality, one should expect that the IMF and the European Union would pay a little more attention to the growth of the Portuguese economy, in order to allow the international investors to get their money back ASAP. But it is not what is happening now. On the contrary, the actual radical austerity measures promoted by both IMF and the European Union are destroying the Portuguese economy and escalating a spiral negative growth, sending the economy to the stone ages, and therefore seriously compromising the ability to pay the loans from the past.
One would say that the investors are not interested to get their money back.
There’s basically three ways to solve a country’s debt: 1/ print more money (quantitative easing), which Portugal cannot do because the country has no national currency anymore and belongs to the eurozone; 2/ negotiate debt haircuts, which is not the better solution; 3/ economic growth.
There’s a fourth alternative for Portugal: to get out from the Euro and reinstate its own currency, in order to grant the possibility of money devaluation according the its own economic scale and therefore allowing a rapid economic growth stimulus.