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Portugal: Migrants needed to solve labour shortage (Unofficial translation)

Portugal's Economy Minister Pedro Siza Vieira said on 8 September that the country needed to attract migrant workers to solve its labour shortages. While in July 2021 the country had seen 'the largest number' of people employed, job creation is also on the rise and more workers are needed, as EWSI reported earlier. Asked what the government could do to help, the minister noted it was necessary to ensure solutions for the integration, housing, training and permanent residence migrant workers, as well as for the education of migrant children.

The government was also looking for financing for housing construction, and municipalities would be able to rely on housing support through Portugal's recovery and resilience plan.

In terms of agriculture - a sector usually offering only seasonal contracts to workers coming predominantly from third countries, the minister noted there were initiatives allowing workers to be involved in different tasks throughout the year. In the Alentejo region, this strategy helped attract workers interested in settling in Portugal long-term, thus also ensuring stability in the workforce. Offering permanent positions to workers also allowed companies to avoid additional trainings and enjoy increased productivity. The municipality of Ferreira do Alentejo, the minister added, surveyed housing solutions and is working to find financing for construction to respond to the needs of migrant workers.