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Interior Minister Carneiro from the Socialist Party. Photo credit: Government of Portugal

Lisbon opens borders to all Portuguese speakers

Not only the German and Italian governments keep opening new paths for immigration. Portugal, too, has opened a Pandora's box and is paving the way for possibly millions of non-European immigrants to the EU – something which is not mentioned by the mainstream media.

Published: February 27, 2023, 6:56 am

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    Interior Minister Carneiro from the Socialist Party (PS) recently presented an ambitious project. According to him, as part of an initiative launched by the PS, the situation of thousands of immigrants who came to Portugal in 2021 and 2022 should be “regularized” (i.e. legalized).

    “For the citizens of the countries of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP), there was a dialogue […] with the aim of finding an equal solution consistent with the international protection of the citizens who came here as a result of the war [in Ukraine],” said Carneiro.

    The ruse is obvious: It is not just about the immigrants in 2021 and 2022, but about all immigrants from the CPLP countries. Apart from Portugal, no other European countries belong to this community – but the African states of Angola, Guinea-Bissao, Cape Verde, Mozambique, São Tomé and Príncipe, South Asian East Timor and Brazil do.

    Will they stay in Portugal?

    In concrete terms, this means that a good 300 million people from predominantly African countries can now assert a direct right to enter and stay in an EU country. As it stands, there are almost no longer any international border controls within the EU due to the Schengen Agreement.

    The Portuguese-speaking immigrants would thus have the opportunity to move freely in Europe since only a fee of 15 euros for the digital issue of the certificate of the residence permit should be incurred.

    Interior Minister Carneiro also stated that citizens of the CPLP countries should also be given immediate access to “direct access to social security, health and tax numbers” in Portugal.

    The nine countries belonging to the CPLP have already established the framework for cooperation on mobility of citizens, and between the states themselves, through a flexible and variable system that will include short stays, temporary stays, visas, and CPLP residence permits, covering holders of diplomatic, official, special and service passports, as well as holders of ordinary passports.

    Politicians unite to open the floodgates

    Earlier, the leader of Portugal’s opposition Social Democratic Party (PSD) Luís Montenegro, urged the PS to take advantage of mass immigration after a fire had devastated a migrant centre.

    “Portugal has an obvious demographic problem. All studies indicate that in the coming years we will lose 20 to 25 percent of our population. We need to retain our young people, we need to not let them leave the country and to take advantage of their qualifications. But this is not enough […] We need to reverse the birth rate trend in Portugal and create conditions to remove the obstacles for those young couples who want to have children. But that is not enough either. We have to have immigration policies, reception policies, and integration policies for immigrants.”

    “Looking at Lisbon, I believe that the day is for us to make a wake-up call to the country and the government, to have a more effective migration policy, that not only supervises but, on the contrary, can plan, can plan the reception and integration of immigrants“, he concluded.

    The number of foreigners legally residing in Portugal rose for the seventh year in a row in 2022 and is now over 757 000, out of a population of just over 10 million people.

    Together with Italy, the ‘oldest’ nation

    Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa recently commented on the latest statistics on ageing in Europe – showing Portugal to be the second ‘oldest’ country, behind Italy. The average age has risen to 46.8.

    He stressed that demographic issues are key to addressing the future of Europe. Especially Brazilians expressed interest in obtaining a residence permit in Portugal.

    According to the latest official figures, Brazilian citizens remain as the main foreign community residing in the country, with a total of 233 138 people, 28 444 (13 percent) more than in 2021.

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