Archive for September, 2019

ELECTIONS IN PORTUGAL

Sep 30 2019 Published by under Business,Local News,What's happening

Country gets ready for its General Elections next Sunday. Ruling Socialist Party expects four more years of governing, but it has been losing power over the last weeks in the polls. Find out all you need to know here!

Portugal’s Prime Minister António Costa, of the Partido Socialista, is confident that a “strong PS” will come out of this elections. Four years ago, the Partido Socialista was only able to form a government with the help of the Communist Party and the Left Bloc, two left-wing parties that secured a coalition with Mr Costa to win over the centre-right PSD.

For this election, however, much has changed, and Portuguese problems have moved out from the austerity shadow to meet with an unsustainable housing crisis boosted by the Tourist boom, a faulty healthcare system and a menacing breakdown in public services.

On the other hand, economic growth and control over public spending enabled Prime Minister Costa to respect his pact with the coalition parties of the left and balance the public accounts, leaving the right-wing opposition with no convincing argument against his government. This leaves the PS with a good chance of reaching a majority in Parliament on October 6.

For the last four years and under the leftist coalition (PS, Communist Party and Left Bloc), Portugal has been growing above the EU average. Financial stability, increase of minimum wage and public salaries and a general improvement of the quality of life have put Portugal on the map as a miracle after overcoming the tough austerity years of the right-wing PSD-CDS government.

WHAT DO THE POLLS SAY?

The expected tendency for next Sunday, as much as in the rest of Europe, is of the main parties losing votes while the smaller parties make progress.

Five out of the six main parties currently in Parliament have been losing points according to the tracking poll of Pitagórica for TVi, JN and TSF.

The two main parties, the ruling centre left Partido Socialista (PS) and centre right Partido Social Democrata (PSD) are currently separated by ten points. Left Bloc with ten points expects to land at least 27 seats at the Parliament, seven more than in the last election.

CDS, the Conservative Right-wing party of Portugal, will most certainly lose strength in Parliament, as is currently above the Green party PAN by only 1.3 points. The Green party PAN has been growing since the last European Elections, where it won 5.1% of the votes and was able to elect its first ever European Parliament member.

I AM AN EXPAT LIVING IN PORTUGAL. CAN I VOTE?

All EU citizens living as residents in Portugal are legally entitled to vote in certain Portuguese elections, namely the Local Municipal elections and the European Parliamentary elections.

For the General election coming next Sunday, October 6, you can also vote as long as you are a National from one of the countries in this list. You must also register as a voter.

To register you must go the Voting Commission (CR) of your Junta de Freguesia or to the Foreigner and Boarder Services (SEF).

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Climate protest report from Tavira

Sep 27 2019 Published by under Local News,What's happening

On Friday, September 27, at 11am in front of the Municipal Market, a climate protest took place. Fridays for the Future, a movement started by school students across the world to protest for new laws on environmental protection,

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Algarve looking for options after Thomas Cook downfall

Sep 26 2019 Published by under Business,Local News,What's happening

The infamous collapse of the British company left the tourism authorities in the region
looking for alternatives.

Although the travel company Thomas Cook only represented 0.2% of the passengers
arriving at the Algarve by air, the tourism authorities in the region are already looking for
options to solve this unexpected vacancy.
The impact in numbers of visitors will not be significant, as the 0.2% represents roughly ten
thousand travellers a year, but with the collapse of Thomas Cook several hotels in the
Algarve will face millions of euros in losses.
Faro Airport and other hotel and tourism associations are looking for solutions to guarantee
that tourists who would normally travel by Thomas Cook can get other means of visiting the
Algarve.
The plan will centre in negotiating with other operators of the biggest markets on the
region. The tourism board of the Algarve guarantees that they are helping the five hundred
visitors affected by the collapse in the Algarve to arrive home safely and with no other
problems.
The United Kingdom’s Civil Aviation Authority said that it has already brought home 95% of
the tourists who were supposed to be back with Thomas Cook on the day and days after the
collapse.

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Warning: High tides in Tavira

Sep 25 2019 Published by under Local News,What's happening

The Município de Tavira issued a warning regarding the expected high tides of the Gilão river on September 29

Residents, merchants and shop owners are warned in a statement issued by the Municipality of Tavira, as the Marés Vivas (perigean spring tides)of this autumn are expected to increase the levels of the Gilão waters considerably on September 28, 29 and 30. The tides will peak on the 29th.

Precaution is expected before and during floods in downtown Tavira. Therefore, the Civil Defence of the region suggest to:

  • Remove equipment on the floor that can me damaged;
  • Avoid flooded areas to prevent dragging toward holes in the ground or open manholes.
  • Avoid parking near the river.
  • Pay extra attention when performing river-related activities.
  • Check the weather forecast and Civil Defence information before leaving home.

The municipality also remembers that in case of emergency the contact number in Portugal is 112.

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GLOBAL CLIMATE MARCH IN THE ALGARVE

Sep 25 2019 Published by under What's happening

The Algarve joins the Global movement for the Earth as several Climate strikes surge on the map. These marches are scheduled for September 27.

After Fridays for the Future, a movement started by school students across the world to protest for new laws on environmental protection, a new, Global Climate Strike has been scheduled, with different groups in different parts of the world mobilising on either or both September 20 and 27.

These strikes are expected to be the beginning of a sustained mass mobilisation to pressure world governments, in order take action in line with climate science and justice. 

In over 150 countries, people are stepping up to support young climate strikers and demand an end to the age of fossil fuels. Portugal is also on that list, and the Algarve has shown its dedication to protect our planet with at least five marches expected to happen, in September 27.

Tavira, Faro, Portimão, Lagos and Aljezur are the hosts of these marches in the region.

The march in Tavira will take place at 11am in front of the Municipal Market and at 5pm at the gates of the Secondary School Dr. Jorge Correia.

The march in Faro will take place in the Hospital Roundabout. Portimão will rally at the doors of the Shopping Mall Aqua. Lagos and Aljezur will host their marches at the Municipal Market. All marches are scheduled for 5pm.

You can find a Climate March near you by clicking on this link.

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Ryanair reaches deal with ANA: Faro base will remain open

Sep 20 2019 Published by under Business,Local News

The Irish airline announced a deal with Portuguese airport authorities to keep its base at Faro Airport open.

Last August the low-cost airline announced that it would close its base in Faro, causing much distress to the tourism authorities in the Algarve who required to keep Ryanair routes at the airport open.

However, in an unpredicted decision, Ryanair issued a statement last Weekend reassuring that the Algarve base will not close.

Yet, several Ryanair workers in the Algarve might lose its job. Around eighty people are expected to be laid off under the new Ryanair base circumstances.

Maintaining the base open was only possible as workers agreed to new “seasonal contracts”.

The Irish low-cost airline inaugurated its base in Faro on 2010. 

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Rainy Weekend: Rain covers Portugal from North to South

Sep 20 2019 Published by under Local News

This weekend arrives with a wet forecast for the whole country.

Even though fair weather is expected to return by Monday, according to IPMA, this Friday will bring rain for Portugal and a temperature drop.

The Algarve, which is currently under drought and on red alert for wildfires, is expected to get rain on Saturday, however temperatures will still reach highs of 28 degrees Celsius. Next week will remain dry with temperatures rising yet once again.

Lisbon is expected to keep its high temperatures too, averaging 28 degrees Celsius for the weekend. Rain announced for Friday and Saturday, but clear skies will be back from Monday onwards.

On Northern Portugal, on the other hand, it will most likely be a wet weekend, with temperatures on averaging highs of 25 degrees Celsius and lows of 16, and rain expected for the weekend and the following week.

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WALKING TRAILS IN THE ALGARVE GET SUPPORT FROM ALCOUTIM

Sep 17 2019 Published by under Lifestyle,Local News,What's happening

Via Algarviana walking trail will receive 3500 euros from the Municipality of Alcoutim. This amount is destined to assist in preservation and management.

Created in 2006, the Via Algarviana is a grid of paths linking the East to the West of the Algarve, from Alcoutim to Cape São Vicente. These trails go almost exclusively through the countryside.

These paths are an important part of the region’s strategy to appeal to a different type of tourism and strengthen the numbers of visitors during wintertime.

The trail is preserved by environmental association ALMARGEM with support from the all the councils of the Algarve.

You can find more information on the trails in English visiting Via Algarviana’s website.

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PORTUGUESE WINE EXPORTS KEEP GROWING

Sep 17 2019 Published by under Business

In 2019 Portuguese wine exports grew 2.5%, while average prices increased by 5%

In a press release issued by the Ministry of Agriculture, wine exports have grown by 2.5% in the first semester of 2019. This growth reflects an increase from 437 million euros (2018) to €448 million euros, considering the total external transactions of Portuguese wine.

Eighteen of the main 25 markets purchasing Portuguese wine have seen an increase in its consumption. In markets that do not belong to the European Union, Portuguese producers increased their exports by 6% in volume and 4% in value when compared to 2018. An example of this is the Angolan market shows an increase of 29% in value between January and July of this year.

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Vale do Lobo Wine Connection Tasting Experience: wines and regional specialities in one single event

Sep 17 2019 Published by under Lifestyle,Local News

Vale do Lobo Auditorium hosts on 4th and 5th October some of the very best wines from across the region, in an event that offers visitors the opportunity to meet the creators behind the products.

The first edition of the Wine Connection Tasting Experience will be held in Vale do Lobo Auditorium on Friday and Saturday the 4th and 5th October, between 4pm and 10pm.

Learn more about the wine making process and taste reds, whites, greens, pinks and sparkling wines from a variety of producers on this two-day fest. There will be an opportunity to try premium spirits and blends, regional specialities including carob products, figs, honey and other foods.

The Wine Connection Tasting Experience unites producers and consumers in one single event in the resort. Tickets to the event cost €10 for and include a commemorative glass and glass holder. You can purchase your tickets here

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