Keep your doors open to construction workers, waiters and high-end professional migrants after leaving the European Union. This is Portugal’s message to Britain.
“I’ve had the opportunity to tell the home secretary that Portugal doesn’t have a segmented view on people’s movement,” Augusto Santos Silva, Minister of Foreign Affairs, said when asked about Britain’s plans to prioritise highly-skilled European migrants after Brexit.
“Therefore the brightest EU migrants are also the construction workers and the waiters,” Silva told reporters after meeting UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid.
As reported by the Reuters news agency, thousands of Portuguese live in Britain and many work as nurses, waiters and cleaners while British citizens living in Portugal are mostly pensioners. Portugal is actively courting wealthy British to move and invest there in the run up to Brexit.
Javid was in Lisbon to present London’s recently published plan on leaving the EU and to discuss the rights of European and British citizens in both countries.
In a separate report, The Portugal News online noted that Portuguese companies are the most pessimistic in Europe regarding Brexit the annual Intrum European Payment Report 2018 said on July 25.
Intrum said that in Portugal, 54% of companies feared that a weakened European Union would have a negative effect on their businesses. Apart from Portugal, Greece (50%), Ireland (45%) and the Czech Republic (42%) were the other countries that were most fearful of Brexit.
“The apprehension of Portuguese companies is natural, but this negative posture regarding Brexit will tend to diminish over time. On the other hand, although most of the European companies that were asked, considered that Brexit would not have an impact on their businesses, the European Payment Report 2018 also showed that the most pessimistic countries considered that the impact would be mainly negative,” the director general of Intrum Portugal, Luís Salvaterra, said in a statement.