Our Last Game – Decentralizing in Portugal is “deeply difficult”, warns Ana Abrunhosa

PHOTO DB / CARLOS JORGE MONTEIRO

The Minister for Territorial Cohesion today considered that decentralizing services in Portugal is “deeply difficult” and “unrealistic” to do from one moment to the next, as there is “great resistance” in the ministries.

“Passing anything from Lisbon to the rest of the country has great resistance in the services of the ministries. I am not saying in the ministers, I am saying in the services of the ministries. It is losing power. We have to be aware of this ”, said Ana Abrunhosa, in an interview with the program Conversa Capital, from Antena 1 and Jornal de Negócios.

“Deconcentrating, decentralizing, is deeply difficult. This Government has been very courageous in this area (…) and has overcome many resistances ”, he added.

Ana Abrunhosa admitted that there are services “that are much easier to change than others” and gave the example of the ministries’ archives: “they can move to these interior territories, we have advantages (…) they liberate buildings that often have high costs ”, He argued.

“For example, in Civil Protection it is very easy, everything that is being created in the scope of Civil Protection is in the interior territories”, said the minister.

In the same interview, Ana Abrunhosa called the dispute between the regions of Leiria and Coimbra for the construction of a new airport in the Centro region “a bad example”.

“Today in the Centro region we have several cities claiming the airport, this is not cohesion”, emphasized the minister.

Questioned about whether that airport infrastructure is necessary, Ana Abrunhosa said she has not yet seen “any study” that demonstrates “that it is necessary and where.”

The Minister for Territorial Cohesion, who before going to the Government, led the Center’s Coordination Commission (CCDRC), urged “all those interested” in the new airport in that region to come together around a project, work together and ensure that is sustainable.

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