LISBON, Portugal – Portugal's center-right coalition government has taken office, starting the countdown to its likely collapse in 11 days' time.
The government of the past four years won an Oct. 4 general election with 38 percent of the vote. But center-left parties that fiercely oppose its austerity policies together collected 62 percent. They are vowing to use their majority in Parliament to force the government's resignation in a scheduled Nov. 10 vote and take power themselves.
That would make the government sworn in Friday the country's briefest ever, and bring concerns about whether Portugal will remain committed to the fiscal discipline required of members of the shared euro currency.
Debt-heavy Portugal is still recovering from its 78 billion-euro ($86 billion) bailout in 2011, when it was engulfed by the eurozone financial crisis.