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Posted by portugalpress on September 03, 2018

In a clear example of the complexity of European decision-making, a Portuguese ‘report’ is now challenging the announcement that Brussels will be forging ahead with legislation to prohibit the annual practice of putting clocks forwards in the spring and back in the autumn (click here).

The report, compiled in just two days by one man, doesn’t totally advocate maintenance of the status quo, it means to tweak it slightly, reports Diário de Notícias.

Instead of putting clocks back to ‘dreaded winter-time’ in October (the reason a record number of Europeans have shown dislike for the practice), the report submitted by Portugal’s Observatory of Astronomy suggests they should go back even earlier: the last weekend in September.

Observatory director Rui Agostinho manages to work Brexit into his reasoning explaining that the only reason for Europe deciding on the last weekend in October was because of “the different tradition that existed in the British Isles”.

As the UK is due to leave the community “this is the adequate moment” to tweak the winter-time changeover, he suggests.

The situation is confused further by political parties that believe Portugal should be allowed to decide what it wants, no matter what 85% of 4.6 million EU citizens think.

For now, the government is due to consider Rui Agostinho’s report and lodge its opinion when Brussels takes the debate to the European Parliament.

Anyone who believed Jean-Claude Juncker’s statement “the people have spoken” meant things would change, will have to wait until at least 2020 - 2021 for any kind of result, stresses European Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc - and even then those dates are only ‘guesstimates’.

Explains DN, into the time-frame “the weight of bureaucracy and political differences” could make a final decision take a great deal longer, particularly in the complex landscape of European elections next May, and Brexit two days before the next ‘summertime’ hour change …

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com

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