Minister of Economy: "If the countries that tourists come from adopt new restrictive measures, that is bad for us"

Pedro Siza Vieira was speaking to journalists at the end of the opening session of the 32nd National Congress of Hotel and Tourism

Pedro Siza Vieira, Minister of Economy, at the opening of the Congress – Photo: Elisabete Rodrigues | Sul Informação

The Government is "very closely monitoring the situation" of the evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic, whether in Portugal or in the rest of Europe. But, "if the countries from which tourists come, come to adopt restrictive measures, that is bad for us", admitted today, in Albufeira, the Minister of Economy.

Pedro Siza Vieira was speaking to journalists at the end of the opening session of the 32nd National Congress of Hotels and Tourism, which began this Thursday, the 11th, at the NAU Salgados Palace Hotel.

The government official said that "we are not yet in safe waters, we continue to have risks and uncertainties, which oblige the Government to be very attentive and to continue working to protect our economy."

Across Europe, namely in the main countries that send tourists to Portugal, the number of new cases, hospitalizations and deaths caused by Covid-19 has been rising.

In the Netherlands (Netherlands), the government is studying the strengthening or the introduction of new restrictions, such as the reduction of hours for restoration, to contain the increase in covid-19 infections, which have already surpassed 12 daily cases.

In Germany, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) released a new record of cases, with that country having registered, in the last 24 hours, a total of 50.196 infections and 235 deaths. The weekly incidence is 249,1 cases per XNUMX inhabitants.

The Economy Minister stressed that “the situation is very different in Portugal compared to other European countries. In the rest of Europe, most serious cases are from people who are not vaccinated", while "many European countries do not have the level of vaccination that we have".

In Portugal, "there is an increase in cases, but this is not being accompanied, at the same pace, by the increase in hospitalizations or deaths".

But, "in other European countries, things don't work the same way, because the level of vaccination is not so intense."

In our country, the objective is "to try to ensure that people over 65 years of age or with comorbidities receive the third dose of the vaccine". "But we are not alone in the world, we do not control what happens in other countries", admitted Pedro Siza Vieira.

Despite the optimistic tone of the Congress promoted by the Hotel Association of Portugal (AHP), which even has the motto "Tourism has a Future!", the evolution of the pandemic and the possibility of a fifth vacancy is worrying hoteliers and other businessmen and responsible for tourism.

The Hotel and Tourism Congress will run until Friday, in Albufeira, with a record number of almost 600 subscribers.