Brexit brings 22 British companies to Portugal – without even happening!

Contrary to the fears of IMF director Christine Lagarde, Brexit – or the Brexit effect – has already brought 22 British companies to Portugal.

In total, they are responsible for 26 investment projects, creating 1400 jobs and with a global value of €460 million.

Says Diário de Notícias today, the numbers come from the Financial Times’ Observatory of Direct Foreign Investment which show that over the last year “the principal source of direct foreign investment Portugal” has been Great Britain.

Portugal’s mission ‘Portugal In’ – set up precisely to ‘capture’ companies fleeing Brexit – is still working on new initiatives to encourage further potential business.

Bernardo de Trindade, Portugal In president, has described a Brexit desk at notaries’ offices promoting ‘Empresa na Hora’ – the facility for setting up a Portuguese-registered company almost immediately.

Right now, ‘Empresa na Hora’ is much more focused on national citizens.

The plan is to make it much more foreigner-friendly and even more accessible from the point of view of British investors.

Says Trindade, the forecast is that ‘Empresa na Hora’ will be extended to foreign investors by the end of the year.

But in the Brexit context, the former secretary of state for Tourism is confident that Portugal is on a winning streak: “Portugal has a secular relationship with the UK and wants to maintain this relationship of enormous proximity, especially when it comes to certain sectors of activity”, he told DN.

These continue to be tourism and real estate but have now extended to technology and pharmaceuticals.

On a wider level Portugal has already launched its campaign to assure British tourists that ‘nothing will change’ (unless it’s for the better) and created a line of credit for companies exporting to the UK to ensure their business flow can continue in the event of a no-deal scenario (click here).

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