Porto strengthens synergies and bilateral relations with Kosovo

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'From culture to tourism, from the environment to science, there are many fields in which Porto and Kosovo can establish synergies and bilateral relations.' It was with this certainty – and strategy – that the Mayor of Porto participated in the Kosovo-Portugal Business Forum in Pristina, this Wednesday morning.

At the invitation of the Kosovo ambassador in Lisbon, Ylber Kryeziu, Rui Moreira spoke at the opening of the event that brings together more than 40 Portuguese companies and 100 Kosovo companies, as well as several Kosovar ministers, with the aim of promoting future partnerships that contribute to the economic growth of both countries.

Recalling how 'Portugal and Kosovo have, over the years, travelled a path of closer diplomatic and cultural ties', the Mayor considers, however, that 'the economic relationship shows vast room for progression' and that there is 'mutual investment potential', be it in terms of economic cooperation, trade, or business partnerships.

[Porto] has been developing and attracting economic activities linked to value-added sectors, with high innovation intensity.'

In the words of the Mayor, digital technologies, cultural and creative industries, tourism, highly specialised services, innovation centres, as well as the mobility, energy and environment sectors 'transformed the city's business fabric and are nowadays largely responsible for creating value, knowledge, innovation and employment'.

'In Porto companies find technological talent and disruptive innovation, modern infrastructures and economic competitiveness, quality of life and environmental sustainability, intercultural tolerance and a cosmopolitan environment', Rui Moreira adds, referring to the number of startups per capita 20% higher than the European average, as well as the growing attractiveness of Porto's universities and polytechnics for training international students.

Also during the forum, the Mayor participated in a debate on 'Business and Investment Opportunities'. On a panel with the Kosovar Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, Liza Gashi, and the directors of the Super Bock group, Rui Ferreira, and the Bernardo da Costa group, Ricardo Costa, Rui Moreira emphasised how 'the city recovered its historic capacity to act as a hub where talent, knowledge, culture and investment meet on a European scale'.

Visit to Albania to talk about tourism, Port Wine and international relations

Rui Moreira's official trip began in Albania, where the Mayor was received by his Tirana counterpart, Erion Veliaj, but also held meetings with other local ministers.

After meeting the Minister of Agriculture, Anila Denaj, Rui Moreira was received by the Minister of Tourism and Environment. The Mayor talked with Mirela Kumbaro about the municipal strategy adopted in the city of Porto, learning about Albania's policies in this industry, the growing number of tourists – 40% more in the first five months of the year compared to the same period in 2023, and the main investments being made, particularly in airport structures.

In Tirana, Rui Moreira also met with Megi Fino, the Secretary of State for Europe and Foreign Affairs, with whom he spoke about the process of Albania's integration into the European Union, the country's affirmation in the Mediterranean and relations between the city of Porto and Tirana.

Before watching the national football team play, the Mayor also had the opportunity to meet with the Albanian Minister of State for Local Administration, Arbjan Mazniku, who, like Porto, has been promoting the provision of housing with intervention in neighbourhoods, as well as boosting the start-up ecosystem.

Another point of contact with the head of Albania's Local Administration was the decentralisation of certain functions, in the fields of education or health.