Lisbon, 26 Oct 2019 (Lusa) – The Government wants to make changes to the Aliens and Borders Service so that there is a “very clear” separation between the police and administrative functions of immigrant documentation, according to the executive program presented today.

“Without prejudice to a determined role in combating human trafficking networks or preventing terrorism, we must reconfigure the way public services deal with the phenomenon of immigration, adopting a more humanistic and less bureaucratic approach, in line with the objective, from regular and orderly attraction of labour to the performance of duties in different sectors of activity.

To this end, the Government will establish a very clear organic separation between the police functions and the administrative functions of permitting and documenting immigrants, ”reads the Government program.

Assuming that Portugal needs the “contribution of immigration” to its economic and demographic development, the program of the XXII Constitutional Government approved today by the Council of Ministers presents several measures to attract foreigners to the country and simplify procedures, aiming to create “formal migration channels, from the countries of origin and ensure that immigrants“ do not become undocumented or on the margins of the system ”.

In this sense, it wants to streamline and simplify the entry process, eliminate the employment quota system, anticipate a short-term temporary permit that allows immigrants to enter Portugal legally for the purpose of seeking employment, promote and modernize security conventions. Also to simplify and speed up the mechanisms of regularization of resident status, in addition to the implementation of regularization programs for foreign citizens, namely through proximity actions with the school community and deepening the SEF on the Move program.

The Government also announces that it wants to revise the residence permit for investment scheme, the so-called “gold visas”, which will “be directed preferentially to low density regions, investment in job creation and urban requalification and cultural heritage”. ”

Over the next four years, the executive intends to study “the implementation of a foreign citizen card equivalent to the citizen card, eliminating the duplication in the presentation of documents issued by public entities”.

According to the Government’s program, a mobile immigrant information and regularization service will be created in the Lisbon metropolitan area and in regions of the country with a high number of foreign workers and is intended to “simplify and shorten the procedures for renewal of residence permits. Portugal”.

In terms of immigration, the Government also wants to create a zone of mobility and freedom of residence between the countries of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP) and launch programs to support the capture of qualified professionals and entrepreneurs in the technological areas. and of high added value, as well as promoting programs to support the attracting of foreign students and researchers by Portuguese higher education institutions, namely in the interior regions.

The XXII Constitutional Government Program approved today by the Council of Ministers has a structure similar to that of the PS electoral program, but different from the traditional thematic organization by ministries that characterized other executives’ programs.

Following approval by the Council of Ministers this afternoon, the Government’s program was sent electronically to the Assembly of the Republic and, as decided at a conference of leaders, will be discussed between Wednesday and Thursday in the Assembly of the Republic – calendar which deserved the disagreement of the PSD.