In a brief speech, the executive leader considered that the country is facing the challenge of knowing "how to take a new leap" at the technological level and argued that the path is through training more qualified staff, retaining talent, attracting external talent, by building companies with greater added value and by a greater connection between companies and knowledge-producing entities.
Afterwards, he commented on an intervention made minutes before by a young woman linked to technology companies, who said that in Spain there is a conviction that Portugal is more advanced in terms of implementing the Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR).
“We don't just have to be further ahead than Spain. We even have to be further ahead than the other Member States of the European Union. The PRR is very interesting, but it will inject something similar to the Marshall Plan simultaneously in all the countries of the European Union”, he pointed out.
In other words, according to António Costa, “the competition will be brutal, because it will be a competition for everything: for raw materials for construction materials, for microchips, for semiconductors and for talent”.
“So we have to be ahead in order to get ahead towards out goal. Our ambition must be to use this extraordinary opportunity that we now have to not only converge with the European average, but also to start reaching the countries that are in the top 10 of the European Union”, he declared.
At this point, the prime minister defended that Portugal has the resources to do so, due to its high rate of graduates in engineering, “the third in the European Union, with only Austria and Germany ahead”.
António Costa later maintained that the technological ecosystem in Portugal “has been very vibrant”, but warned that it is essential that it “continue to grow”.
“This is an absolute priority for the country”, he declared, before referring to the fact that Portugal already has “seven unicorns”, technological companies with capital in excess of one billion US dollars.
“These seven unicorns convey a message of trust to all other startups. Most startups will never be unicorns. But the example that these unicorns set is a huge motivating factor for those who are already doing business, for those who are still studying, or for those out there”, he added.