“Portugal ended the year 2022 with 22,000 million euros, which is absolutely extraordinary because, in one year, we not only managed to recover what we did in 2019, but also surpassed the results by another 20 percent”, said the minister.

Speaking at the closing session of the inauguration of the new School of Hospitality and Tourism (EHTP) in the Algarve municipality of Portimão, the official recalled that tourism, “one of the engines of development of the country’s economy, was highly affected by the pandemic, almost paralyzed for two years, leading to a great demotivation” of economic agents.

“There were many people who said that to recover the numbers of 2019 it would take three, four or five years, but we managed to recover during the last year alone”, he underlined.

António Costa Silva stated that for Portugal to “achieve one of the goals of being the most sustainable destination in the world, one of the highest quality, “it is necessary to work together, developing collaborative networks”.

“If we build these platforms, if we have clear intentions, we can transform the lives of our communities, create wealth and align the country with the future”, he said.

Fundamental pillar

He added: “there is still prejudice in the country in relation to tourism”, a sector that, he recalled, “is undoubtedly one of the fundamental pillars of our economic development”.

“We, at the Ministry of Economy, have a very clear vision about tourism: tourism is a tool to develop the country from north to south, including the autonomous regions [of Madeira and the Azores]”, he noted.

In the same sense, he added, that tourism "is present throughout the national space and it is transversal, it mobilizes multiple sectors of the economy, from construction to transport, to a whole set of industries".

“If we use this tool [tourism] in its proper sense, it is absolutely transformative”, he reinforced.