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The number of new immigrants in Portugal is "rising significantly," demonstrating the popularity of the country not only for real estate investment but also as a destination to live and work on a permanent basis.

“We went from 44 million passengers in airports’ security check in 2016 to 55 million in 2018," the Home Office Minister Eduardo Cabrita said, adding that Portugal has also seen a "significant rise" in new resident permits in 2018 and in the first four months of this year, 2019.

During the opening session of a congress held by the trade union of investigation officials from the Portuguese Immigration and Borders Service (SEF), Cabrita pointed out that in 2104, 35,000 new resident permits were granted and that last year 62,000 were issued.

According to the Portuguese news agency Lusa, Cabrita has said that between the months of January and April this year, 30,000 new resident permits were granted - as many as in the whole year of 2014.

Portugal is seeing mainly a surge of Brazilian migrants, Cabrita explained: "Brazil's social and economic instability justifies the country seeing the biggest flux of new residents," he said.

"We saw 28,000 new resident permits for Brazilian citizens in 2018 and 17,000 just in the first four months of the year. That's why it doesn't make much sense to talk of the entries refused which make 0.02%, that is, one in five thousand refused entries."

"Portugal is an attractive country again," he concluded.

Meanwhile, investment by Chinese nationals under Portugal’s ‘golden visa’ programme (ARI as it is officially known) was, in the first four months of this year, down 37% on the same period of 2018, at €75.7 million, data from SEF shows.

So far this year, 138 residence permits for investment activity were assigned under the ARI scheme to citizens of China. In April alone, investment by Chinese nationals under the scheme totalled €16.1 million.

As for Brazilian nationals, investment under the ARI scheme in the first four months of the year was down 7.3% at €50.5 million, for a total of 69 permits issued. In April alone, Brazilian investment was €7.3 million.


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