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Portugal PM welcomes Indian investment with 'open arms'

Portugal Prime Minister Antonio Costa on Sunday welcomed India to invest in his country, saying it would be received with “open arms” as he fondly spoke of his Indian origin. Highlighting that Portugal has a “classical position” to access key worldwide markets and is in central zone connecting UK and other European countries, he said, adding it was always open to FDI and “it is a country open to the world.”

“… We also have excellent ties with the US and Canada. We have connectivity both to Africa and Latin America. We have direct flights to 121 cities across the world. We welcome you to invest in our country,” he said, while addressing the 14th edition of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas in Bengaluru. Costa said, “I can assure you that Portugal is an open country that will receive you with open arms if you have ideas to invest in Portugal, work or study or simply for living. Portugal is always open to FDI…,” he said.

Costa, who is of Indian origin from Goa, said he would love to go to Goa, where his father spent his childhood. “I like to go to Goa where my father spent his childhood. I call upon this vibrant Indian diaspora to help promote cordial ties with Portugal and India.” Costa said the India origin community is well integrated in Portugal. “… their contribution to the Portuguese society is highly valued and, at the same time, I believe these Portuguese Indians are contributing their mite to Indian society as well,” he said.

“Maybe it is not by chance that I am the first person of Indian origin to lead the European country,” he said as the Chief Guest at the three-day event here which is Centre’s outreach programme to overseas Indian community. He said ability to interact with people of other origin, culture or religion is part of Portuguese DNA and it is the duty of the diaspora to not only preserve their ties but also strengthen ties with India and the country where they live. Portuguese and India had centuries old relationship on historical, cultural and personal ties, he said, adding, by this visit he wanted to renew this relationship “to address present and future challenges”, besides extending ties and strategic partnership in new areas of cooperation.