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The Emigration of the Portuguese Youth

The Emigration of the Portuguese Youth

We have already spoke about how great Portugal is as a destination to live, and to emigrate, and come and enjoy a well-deserved retirement. 

We have a country with a wonderful climate, hospitality, gastronomy and a rich culture. We are also a caring, solidary and increasingly sustainable country. If we all share this same opinion, why do our young people still want to emigrate and leave their country of origin?  

This new generation is the most educated generation that Portugal has ever had, with young people who are more active and more knowledgeable and necessary to make the country grow. Even so, they prefer to go abroad, to grow personally and professionally in an unknown country, away from their families, their friends, their customs and origins.  

What are we doing with these young people? What are we doing with our country that means we are increasingly aging and losing our youth? Are we aware of what might happen to these people, and our country, in a few years?   

In 2022 there will be, for the seventh consecutive year, an increase in the resident foreign population.  Increasingly, Portugal is a destination of choice for emigrants to stabilize and put down roots.   

 

So, why do our young people decide to emigrate?  

 

In reality, young Portuguese like their country and, according to them, emigration is forced. These young people, who are increasingly educated, and more and more able to make our country grow, are not rewarded for their effort and work. This generation finds itself trapped by jobs that often exceed the legal daily hours in exchange for salaries that don’t cover the cost of living in Portugal. We continue with precarious situations of unpaid internships and minimum wages that are barely enough to live on, let alone to stabilize themselves, buy a house, and start a family.   

 

It is not the first time that Portugal has seen its young generation emigrate, but, unlike in the past, when the majority of Portuguese who emigrated did so with the vision of returning one day to settle down. Today this is not the case, since most emigrants have no intention of returning, especially as the salaries they receive abroad are three times higher in than they’d often receive here. They also find professional progression, something that doesn't always happen in our country.   

 

Portugal has been showing itself to be very concerned with education and more and more bets are being made on this sector, but the truth is that the return on this effort is not reaped later, and this is quite problematic on many levels!  

 

It's a subject that we must all pay a lot of attention to and give due importance to, since we are losing the most qualified generation in our country. 

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