MANY BELGIANS MOVE TO PORTUGAL IS THIS THE END OF THE ELDORADO?
More and more foreign pensioners are living in Portugal since 2014. Why have these European pensioners moved there en masse? Why might this exodus soon stop?
To understand the phenomenon, you have to go back to 2014. At the time, the IMF has just left the country and the real estate market is in full crisis. The government then takes a fiscal measure that will revive the construction market: foreign pensioners are exempt from taxes for ten years if they live in Portugal for more than six months.
System considered unfair
The success of this measure has exceeded all expectations. Belgians, French, Swiss, tens of thousands of retirees move in especially in the Lisbon area and in the south, in the Algarve. But today, the demand exceeds the supply, and more and more Portuguese tenants are evicted from their homessold most often to more affluent foreigners.
While Belgian or French pensioners do not pay taxes, Portuguese pensioners are still subject to the general regime.
One political party, the Bloc de gauche, has decided to make this its battle horse and has decided to put an end to the privileges reserved for foreigners. This debate is likely to divide members of Parliament, as the equation is complex. On the one hand, there is a significant inflow of money for the country's economy. On the other hand, the system is unfair, especially for the Portuguese, who do not benefit from any tax gift.