Portugal’s government has authorised the installation of dedicated UK Passport holder corridors at two of its airports to enable the smooth flow of post-Brexit holidaymakers.
Prime Minister, António Costa, stated that, “Millions of Britons visit Portugal as tourists every year, we have to ensure the flow is not interrupted.”
The first two sites to be prepared are the Algarve’s Faro airport and Funchal airport on Madeira, both of which will install and operate special facilities for passengers with UK passports.
The prime minister also announced a raft of measures to help Portuguese businesses that may well be hit by the UK’s exit from the European Community if gthere is no last minute deal, the so-called, ‘hard Brexit.’
Costa has set aside a €50 million credit line for the country’s exporters most likely to be hit by a drop in trade.
The PM also announced that 60 additional customs officers are to be hired for post-Brexit border checks.
In the UK, the Portuguese government is to boost consular assistance for the estimated 400,000 nationals that may be concerned and affected by status and employment issues.
The government line for British residents in Portugal is that they will be able to retain their residence and other rights, including access to state healthcare. Of the estimated 45,000 Britons living in Portugal, only 23,000 of them are said to be registered.
Around13 million tourists visited Portugal last year, but the number of British fell by a tenth due to Brexit fears and the poor exchange rate.
As well as keeping British residents happy, the government is to launch a major promotional campaign in the UK to encourage visitor numbers.