Portuguese Job Market News

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The implementation of the ISCTE business plans focusing on new exporting SMEs could lead to the creation of 50,000 to 70,000 new jobs in Portugal by 2013.

The study “Internationalization of SMEs”, led by Eurico Dias, Professor at ISCTE, demonstrates that it could be achieved.

There are 14,000 Portuguese SMEs exporting less than € 1 million per year. Together they employ 4.6 million workers. Eurico Dias took a sample of 550 SMEs and made the following conclusion:

“New exporters have a significant presence in services with many of them in or around the Portuguese language sector, especially in Brazil. If the SMEs Projects for the period 2010 to 2013 were fully implemented, they would generate an average of four jobs per company, in organizations that have less than 25 people. We would have more 2,600 new jobs.”

By extrapolating those figures to 14,000 SMEs exporting less than € 1 million per year, up to 70,000 new jobs could be created.

This is yet another sign that solutions to the crisis can be found. In the end, it means more potential opportunities for bilingual job seekers in Portugal.

McDonald’s will open three new restaurants in Portugal by the end of 2012. Mario Barbosa, CEO of McDonald’s Portugal, will confirm the € 15 million investment at the National Agriculture Fair in Santarém in June. The first restaurant  will open in Coimbra.
With last year’s opening of four new restaurants, the total of new jobs created by McDonald’s in Portugal will represent over 200.

This week, the National Institute of Statistics has released figures showing a further unemployment rise in Portugal.

The jobless rate is now at 14.9%. It was 12.4% in the same quarter in 2011.

It illustrates the difficult times that Portuguese jobseekers have to face. Does it mean that there is no hope?

Portuguese people have always shown an ability to find new ways out of a crisis. They have travelled across the globe in order to find better opportunities. Recently, they have started to migrate to former colonies, Brazil and Angola in particular, in very high numbers.

Being bilingual is more important than ever and Portuguese migrants have an advantage here. It has been said that the average level of English spoken by Portuguese people is higher than by any other Portuguese speaking population.

If Portuguese jobseekers are happy to get an international position or even live in another country, they can really beat the economic crisis – Maybe there is light at the end of the tunnel after all…

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Portuguese younger population is increasingly looking to former colonies for better opportunities. Work permits applications to Angola has seen a seven-fold rise in the last few years. Brazil is welcoming more and more Portuguese expatriates.

Portuguese emigration is not new of course but the move to Angola in particular shows a new trend. Other European countries face economic challenges with sometimes high unemployment. On the other hand, Angola, with a 10% growth per year and Brazil, a leading emerging market offer real opportunities.

Finding a job in Portugal is not necessarily impossible, especially for bright graduates, but they find that companies in Angola give them a longer term career prospect.

Portuguese students also have an advantage over locals in Brazil or Angola. Their English language skills tend to be higher. In a business world getting always smaller, would-be successful employees need a good level of foreign language skills and in particular English.

Despite an unprecedented economic crisis, the future for young Portuguese people does not need to be all gloom and doom. However, this future might have to be in another country, where long term prospects exist and where specific skills, including English language fluency, will give them an advantage.

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