Web Summit sees government present new “Start Up” residency visa

It’s the second year running for Lisbon’s four-day tech event, and the Parques das Nações Web Summit promises to be even bigger and better this time round.

Initial reports point to as many as 65,000 visitors this year (2016’s event counted 53,000), including a number of major-league political figures.

Guest speakers include former American vice-president Al Gore, and recently outgoing French president François Hollande.

Other ‘VIPs’ expected include secretary general of the United Nations António Guterres, Europe’s competitions commissioner Margrethe Vestager and legendary chess champion Garry Kasparov.

According to Público, the capital’s Alojamento Local (AL) sector is booming as company representatives, entrepreneurs and tech specialists descend on Lisbon from all sides.

Says noticiasaominuto, transport problems will be a feature of the next few days, with the Lisbon Metro asking its users for their understanding.

Despite being a private initiative, the event is being heavily taken advantage of by the government which has used it to launch a new form of residency visa.

The “Start Up” visa has been tailor-made for “entrepreneurs who mean to attract investment, talent and the capacity for innovation to Portugal”.

Presenting it today (Monday), the economy ministry said an online platform hoping to attract young businesspeople from third world countries will be up and operating from January 1, 2018.

The idea, running as part of the government’s Start Up Portugal programme, involves young entrepreneurs being able to prove that their ideas could create qualified work and a business that in three years time could be worth €325,000, or have a volume of business “superior to €500,000 per year”.

Business incubators, as these initiatives will be called, will be evaluated for their potential by government agency IAPMEI, explains Expresso.

Said economy minister Manuel Caldeira Cabral, the programme means to “reinforce the ecosystem of innovation… affirming Portugal as a country open to entrepreneurism and all those that with their knowledge and capacity for innovation can bring investment into the Portuguese economy”.

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Photo: https://twitter.com/govpt