Portugal’s ‘tourism bazooka’ – trailed last week by former deputy prime minister Paulo Portas (click here) – has been presented today with the message that the government hopes to see a €27 billion return by 2027.
Economy minister Pedro Siza Vieira is “convinced” that the “Portuguese economy will surprise us again”.
To this end the executive has been preparing the plan for weeks (see below) based on what it calls “four pillars of action”. These are “supporting companies, fostering security, generating business and constructing a future”.
The plan involves specific short, medium and long-term measures “that will allow for the transformation of the sector, positioning it on a higher level of creation of value, contributing in an expressive way to the growth of GDP and a more just distribution of wealth”.
It’s a plan, says the government, “that will see revenue from income exceed €27 billion in a sustainable way, generating wealth and well-being throughout the territory, all year round, focusing on the diversification of markets and segments”.
In the ‘immediate’ short term priority is being given to ‘supporting companies’ through measures that “preserve their productive potential and employment within the sector”.
Reports stress that almost half this €6 billion euro package will go towards (re)capitalising businesses, and boosting their competitiveness.
To this end, the government has set up various ‘instruments of support for capitalisation’, including a specific fund and two credit lines: “the credit line with guarantee for refinancing pre-Covid debt” and the “credit line for financing necessities”.
The first sign of ‘support for companies’ comes in the form of the IVAucher, a programme designed to boost consumption when it comes to the accommodation, culture and restaurant sectors. It works on the basis that people ‘accumulate IVA’ on an expense as a ‘credit that can be discounted later in another purchase’ within those sectors.
The IVAucher programme begins on June 1, along with a new Selo Clean&Safe 2.0 – again designed to ‘promote Portuguese tourism’ in the post-pandemic context.
With all the plans presented by Mr Siza Vieira this morning came the news that the long-awaited “Digital Green Certificates” to facilitate travel within the European Union this summer will now be renamed “Digital Covid Certificates of the EU” – and will carry information showing either that holders have received both shots of an approved vaccine against Covid-19, have a negative PCR test for the virus or that they have only recently recovered from it (and so have built up an immune response protecting them).
The idea of these certificates is to do away with the need for any kind of quarantines within the bloc, although the possibility of individual countries bringing in their own rules remains ‘open’.
For the government’s tourism recovery plan download the PDF: