“Our expectation is that we would all like that, within a year and a half, the pending situation of the documentary component will be resolved and, therefore, that we would have the Agency dealing with what is its daily demand and only that”, Luís Goes Pinheiro told journalists, upon arrival at the new agency's service point, which replaces the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF) in the administrative management of cases.

“There was not always the capacity to respond in the time that we would all like, we are talking about almost 350,000 pending issues that the Agency faces”, stated Goes Pinheiro, admitting the weight of the new organisation's legacy.

More resources

Until the pending processes are resolved, “many measures will have to be taken”, which include an increase in human resources, but “also essentially a real technological shock in the documentary area”.

SEF's structural IT problems have been one of the main criticisms of unions and immigrant associations and now it is up to AIMA's management to launch a competition to modernise the entire system.

“It is absolutely essential to invest decisively in renewing the technological park in the digital transformation of this area, in order to ensure that the human resources that are present today and those that will be added to them are more than sufficient to fully serve the our users”, he said.

But for now, admitted Goes Pinheiro, the objective is to try to respond to the volume of information.

“In this initial phase - which is expected to last several months because the demand is so great that we can truly speak of an avalanche of documents that the Agency receives on the first day - it will be necessary to reinvent every day to find solutions to serve the best possible way”, stated the president of AIMA.

Today, immigrants who sought the location were confronted with the absence of any change in procedures, which led to complaints, something that Goes Pinheiro minimised.

“This start was the expected start, that is, we know well that the creation of the new Agency resulted from a set of transfers of powers from the old SEF to various entities, namely also here to the Agency, which is not just the result of the merger with the administrative component of the SEF, but also with the High Commission for Migrations”, he explained.

Now, AIMA will “replenish all the human resources” that came from other organisations and plans to hire 190 employees.

The new agency inherits 347 thousand processes and the priority will be to regularize, by the end of the year, cases of family reunification and, in the first quarter of 2024, the executive will launch, together with municipalities and local immigrant support offices, actions to resolve pending cases, allocating more resources to resolve existing cases.

This effort, will also include the placement of AIMA services in citizen stores and the increase of 10 more service points that will be added to the existing 34.