The Portuguese minister of planning and infrastructure, Pedro Marques, lamented on Friday, the UK’s decision to leave the European Union (EU), but said it was a democratic act by the citizens.
“It is a decision we obviously regret. Not the fact that the people voted democratically, because that is normal and healthy in a democracy”, he said.
“We are European supporters and we want Europe to continue to expand and continue to be a space of cohesion and peace”, he said.
Ideal Homes, a real estate company based in the central Algarve, has told The Portugal News that it has clinched a major deal through a British buyer within hours of Britain voting to leave the EU.
Chris White, the owner of Ideal Homes, told The Portugal News on Friday afternoon revealed that a property worth €500,000 was sold to a British family shortly after results came out to show the Leave campaign had won the referendum.
He added that seven other potential buyers from the UK had made appointments on Friday for viewings of property in the Algarve, while another British buyer had also secured a mortgage to purchase a home.
“Too be honest, I was worried about the referendum results, but the business we did today clearly shows that there is still huge interest in property in the Algarve”, Chris White explained.
On a day when the United Kingdom voted to exit the European Union, the Portuguese consulate in Goa was nearly deserted. On most days, serpentine queues wend around the consulate’s Panjim office, which issues between 30 and 40 Portuguese passports a day. But Friday was unusually dull.
Portugal, which ruled Goa for 450 years before it was incorporated into India in 1961, recognises Goans born before that year – as well as their children and grandchildren – as Portuguese citizens. Passport agents who help applicants through the paperwork estimate that 300,000 to 400,000 Goans have become Portuguese citizens since Portugal joined the European Union in 1986.
Because citizens of European nations can live and work anywhere in the EU, an estimated 20,000 Goans have used their Portuguese passports to settle in the UK, a country that uses a language most Goans know.
But with the British exit from the EU, an event that has become to be known as Brexit, obtaining a Portuguese passport is likely to become less attractive for Goans.
“Things are going to be difficult for them from now on after Brexit,” said a consulate official who asked to remain unidentified. “Though it is expected to take a while, restrictions are bound to be put into place.”
LISBON: Portugal will stick to a rigorous budget management to meet its deficit reduction goals and overcome any turbulence linked to Britain’s decision to leave the European Union, the finance ministry said on Friday. “The finance ministry reaffirms commitment to the established budget targets that will allow us to leave the excessive deficit procedure,” it said in a statement.
Within hours of Britain voting to leave the European Union, news has already started emerging of businesses in Portugal already feeling the pinch of the uncertainty this result has generated.
An international school was also told on Friday morning that the enrolment of two British children would be put on hold due to the outcome of the referendum, with the prospective parent continuing to say that he was heading off to his lawyers to cancel the purchase of a property.
Portuguese business people in the UK have also expressed worry over how Brexit is going to affect them.
José Cruz, who runs one of the biggest importers of Portuguese products into the UK told the Lusa News Agency that “we are going to struggle and we need to make immediate decisions.”
The director of Atlântico added that his company does not only deal with Portugal, but with other countries who trade in the dollar.
“We are going to have to increase our prices, we are not sitting around waiting for better news”, he said.
Guilherme Rosa, elected for Labour in Stockwell, south London, and where there is a large Portuguese community, said that it was going to be “economic doom here.”
He added that the talk in Stockwell is also about how holidays will become more expensive and they “won’t be able to visit Portugal as often.”
There were also concerns that the euro would devalue strongly against the dollar, meaning that with almost immediate effect, fuel prices here would rise as Portugal pays in dollars to obtain oil.