António Pina is also president of AMAL, the association of Algarve municipalities

“Our economy is moribund”: AMAL boss urges government to act

In yet another stark warning about the devastating impact of the pandemic, the president of the Algarve Municipalities Association (AMAL) has declared the region’s economy “moribund”, and that unemployment will skyrocket unless the government acts.

“This summer is far worse than last year,” Pina, who is also mayor of Olhão, told Antena 1 radio.

The government’s support measures are “insufficient to save the thousands of micro and small-sized companies” which were expecting a summer that would at least help keep them afloat,” he said.

If nothing is done, Pina believes unemployment will skyrocket in the Algarve.

The “good news” is that vaccinations have been increasing at a steady pace in the Algarve in the last three weeks and, although “the number of people infected with Covid-19 in the region is similar or even higher to what it was February, the impact these cases are having on hospitals is much lower”, he stressed.

Thus, according to Pina, “the paradigm has changed, so the rules have to change”.

Despite his pleas, every coastal borough in the Algarve is included in the two highest risk categories in today’s re-evaluation of Portugal’s epidemiological situation (except Alcoutim, which is ‘under alert’, and Aljezur).

michael.bruxo@algarveresident.com