Economy Minister says Portugal can respond to “urgent problem” of energy in Europe

The Minister of Economy and the Sea considered this Tuesday that Portugal can respond to the “urgent problem of energy security” in Europe, thanks to the potential it has in terms of renewable energies and the bet on the port of Sines.

In a meeting with businessmen that took place this Tuesday in Sintra – where the Prime Minister, António Costa, was also present -, António Costa Silva considered that the “invasion of Ukraine by Russia marked a new geopolitical age”, where “clearly the geotectonic plates of international geopolitics are moving”.

“But, curiously, for our country, due to its strategic position, we are recovering some of the great projects that can be differentiators for the future and, under the leadership of the Prime Minister, the Sines port project – for the converting it into a ‘hub’ for receiving liquefied natural gas and carrying out a ‘transshipment’ of ships to northern Europe – could mark a novelty, putting Sines on the map of international interconnections”, he said.

In this session – the last one within the scope of the meetings called “On the way to Hannover”, organized by the prime minister before the Hannover Fair, which starts this Sunday -, the official defended that “Europe has an urgent problem of energy security , and Portugal has immense potential in terms of renewable energies”.

“We are receiving many expressions of interest, probably in the future we will have artificial islands away from the coast, where you can have ‘offshore’ wind projects, wave energy with aquaculture down, and with the new grid economies, the that can be transformative for the future”, he said.

Addressing the Hannover fair, in which Portugal participates this year as a partner country, Costa Silva defended that the event “will be another platform to affirm and consolidate the image of the country as an innovative country”.

Speaking before the Minister of Economy, the mayor of Sintra, Basílio Horta, also defended that Portugal “is having a good time”, hoping that “this moment is not just conjunctural, it is structural”.

“We have to take advantage of it, we have to encourage more and more knowledge, research, connection with companies, competitiveness, knowing the context costs and solving them. (…) Therefore, we are and we hope, we trust, that this moment is the beginning of a strong recovery that we deserve, that the country deserves and that the country is looking forward to”, said the mayor.

Basílio Horta also wanted to congratulate António Costa on the Sines port project, which he considered to be “a diamond that has been cut”.

“This idea of ​​placing the port of Sines to receive the large ships with liquefied gas tanks, and being able to transfer them to smaller ships that can then supply northern Europe and the Baltics, thus reducing dependence on Russia, is a great decision, and I warmly congratulate him: for the economy and, fundamentally, for the politics associated with it”, he said.

Speaking also to the businessmen who attended the meeting and who will participate in the Hannover fair, the German ambassador to Portugal, Martin Ney, was “satisfied and a little proud” for having helped Portugal to be the partner country in the edition this year’s Hannover fair.

“The Hannover Messe is a platform, it’s a marketplace, where companies can find new partners: this is particularly important today. The pandemic, and even more so Russia’s attack on Ukraine, has shown that we have to make our economies more resilient, which means finding safer supply chains,” he said.

Thanking António Costa for “taking the huge opportunity to show the capabilities of Portuguese industry at the largest industrial fair in the world”, Martin Ney also said that the event is “the best platform for companies to form new partnerships and find new customers”.

Hannover Messe’22 starts this Sunday and ends on Friday. This year, Portugal was chosen as a partner country.

In this context, António Costa will travel to that German city between Sunday and Monday to, together with the Chancellor of Germany, Olaf Scholz, inaugurate the fair.

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