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Your Algarve News Highlights - June 15th 2024

Your Algarve News Highlights - June 15th 2024

Dear Reader,

 

Here is your weekly news overview…

Its still possible to purchase a 100m2 Algarve property for less than €110,000

The Algarve is well known for its lack of cheap homes, as 14 of its 16 municipalities have prices above the national average. But where are the cheapest areas to buy a house in the region?

 

This phenomenon of high property prices in the Algarve results from several factors, including the limited supply of homes for sale, the considerable increase in local accommodation in recent years and the popularity of the region as a destination for purchasing holiday homes. 

 

In recent months, there has been an increase in housing prices, making purchasing a home one of the main concerns of the Portuguese. However, there are those who are currently considering investing in a house and, according to Novo Banco, the Algarve “could be an interesting option to make the most of your money in the long term”.

 

It is known that house prices vary according to the proximity or distance from the coast, and the existence of golf courses nearby can contribute to the increase in housing prices. Therefore, Loulé stands out as the Algarve municipality with the highest price per square metre. This area is known for being home to some of the most famous beaches in the Algarve, such as Quinta do Lago, Ancão and Vale do Lobo.

 

According to data from the National Statistics Institute (INE), only two municipalities in the Algarve have housing prices below the national median average of 1,611 euros/m2.

 

In Alcoutim, property is 795 euros/m2 and Monchique it is 1,057 euros/m2. Both are located inland, with no direct access to beaches, so in these areas it is possible to buy a 100m2 house for less than €110,000.

 

São Brás de Alportel is the third cheapest municipality for buying houses in the Algarve, with an average price of 1,843 euros per square metre. In 2023, 100m2 properties were selling for a median value of more than €180,000 in this area.

 

These three municipalities are where buying a house is most affordable in the Algarve region, however, none of them are among the list of 50 most popular municipalities to purchase property between October and December last year.

 

The three most expensive municipalities – Loulé (3,269 euros/m2), Lagos (3,182 euros/m2) and Vila do Bispo (3,162 euros/m2). In these areas, a 100m2 house was sold for a median value of more than €300,000. But these areas are also not among the most sought after areas to buy property.

 

Only eight of the 16 municipalities in the Algarve are among the most researched to purchase housing at the end of 2023.

 

Vila Real de Santo António was the most sought after, despite being in 24th position in the general ranking, with a median cost of 2,311 euros/ m2 during last year, according to INE.

 

The list of the most popular Algarve municipalities also includes Portimão, Silves, Albufeira, Tavira, Lagoa and Castro Marim, where the price of 100m2 houses varied between €215,000 and €283,000 last year.

 

Faro was the least sought after municipality of all, despite the cost of houses sold being in the middle of the Algarve table (2,315 euros/m2).

 

 

Ana Paula Martins will spearhead the first Algarve local health system and new hospital

Ana Paula Martins, Minister of Health, will take over the first local health system and new hospital in the Algarve.

 

In a statement, the PSD Algarve says that the Minister of Health, heard today at the Health Commission of the Assembly of the Republic, says that she will create the country's first local health system in the Algarve, which will include all municipalities in the region, "and establish an articulation of resources between the public, social and private systems in order to optimize the health care provided and combat the chronic bottlenecks that the region faces in this area".

 

When questioned by PSD deputies, the party states that Ana Paula Martins stated that "the Algarve is a different region, so it has to be treated differently. That's why we're going to have the country's first local health system in the region. And that is why the Prime Minister will clarify the issue of the timeline for the advancement of the Algarve Central Hospital", assuming that the proposal under study is to be a public-private partnership, that will include management.

 

 

Albufeira: 26 beaches receive the Blue Flag again

Out of a total of 92 Blue Flag awards awarded to beaches in the Algarve, Albufeira once again won the highest number of awards, raising the Blue Flag on 26 of its beaches.

 

On June 7th, the Blue Flag raising ceremony took place at Praia dos Pescadores, which was attended by members of the council and various local and regional entities.

The  Abufeira beaches awarded the Flag are: Alemães, Arrifes, Aveiros, Belharucas, Castelo, Coelha, Evaristo, Falésia Açoteias, Falésia Alfamar, Galé-Leste, Galé-Oeste, INATEL – Albufeira, Manuel Lourenço, Maria Luísa, Olhos de Água, Oura, Oura-Leste, Peneco, Pescadores, Rocha Baixinha, Rocha Baixinha-East, Rocha Baixinha-Poente, São Rafael, Salgados, Santa Eulália and the Albufeira Marina.

 

On the same morning, the Accessible Beach Flags were also raised on 14 of Albufeira's beaches: Alemães, Galé-Leste, Galé-Oeste, INATEL – Albufeira, Manuel Lourenço, Maria Luísa, Oura, Olhos de Água, Peneco, Pescadores, Rocha Baixinha , Rocha Baixinha-Nascente, Salgados and Santa Eulália.

José Carlos Rolo, president of the municipality, said in his speech, "with the 26 Blue Flags, Albufeira reaffirms itself as an example of environmental excellence and commitment to sustainability, attracting visitors from all over the world".

The Regional Director of the Administration of the Algarve Hydrographic Region at the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA/ARH), Pedro Coelho, said that "a set of interventions has been developed in order to mitigate possible complications in the water quality, risks of collapse, increased safety and reduced consumption”.

 

 

Portugal at risk of returning to a deficit

The Bank of Portugal have warned that the measures that have been approved recently put the country at risk of recording budget deficits again in the coming years, according to the June Economic Bulletin, released this month.

 

The June Economic Bulletin has forecasts for public accounts. However, according to the Bank of Portugal, “the approval and announcement of new measures with a budgetary impact in the weeks prior to the publication of this bulletin, conditions the assessment of the situation of public finances in Portugal in the coming years”.

 


The central bank even states that “the magnitude of these measures and their nature”, due to the impact of reduced revenue and/or increased expenditure, imply a reduction in the budget balance, with the consequence being the risk of a return to budget deficits.

“With the information available, a return to a deficit situation is expected, putting at risk the desirable trajectory for public expenditure within the scope of the new European budgetary rules”, reads the report.

In 2023, the budget balance was positive at 1.2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Already questioned by journalists about the return to deficit, Centeno said that a balance will only be effectively calculated after the budgetary exercise, and that until then there are other impacts that will have to be taken into account, such as the lagged budgetary impact and compensation measures that can be considered.

Even so, he spoke of several measures that prove to be problematic from a budgetary point of view, such as tax reductions and salary negotiations in public administration.

“If the compensation measures do not appear, our assessment is that there is no budgetary margin for what is being presented,” said Centeno.

The former Minister of Finance of the PS Government said that economic policies must be “prudent and countercyclical”, including budgetary ones.

 

 

Lack of doctors causes 14 hour waits in A&E departments over the long weekend

This bank holiday weekend, combined with the lack of doctors, but A&E departments under severe pressure yesterday morning, across Portugal.

 

At Fernando Fonseca Hospital  in Amadora, Sintra the average waiting time to be treated for patients with a yellow bracelet (recommended time 1 hr), reached a whopping 13 hours and 17 minutes, with 43 patients waiting. 

 

The situation was similar for those with yellow bracelets at the Hospital in Portimão, where waiting time reached 6 hours 41 minutes. Patients at Beatriz Ângelo Hospital in Loures suffered waits of 4 hours 30 minutes, and at the Santa Maria, in Lisbon it was 3 hours 38 minutes.

 

This dire situation has led the Portuguese Society of Internal Medicine to point out “mistakes and errors in the proposals on Urgency in the Health Emergency Plan”. They state that around 2164 beds are unduly occupied by patients who should recover at home, limiting the functioning of hospital services.

 

The lack of Internal Medicine specialists and the low attractiveness for new doctors to choose this specialty were also highlighted in the presentation to the Ministry of Health, with 250 vacancies not filled in the last two years.

 

The Central Administration of the Health System say that, up until April this year, 8895 doctors are working in emergencies, of which 3232 are internal doctors. That is just 36% of the total needed.

 

 

Stabbings and gunshots in Faro at the weekend

Police in Faro were called to two incidents of public disorder on Saturday, which involved stabbings and gunshots on the public roads of the city.

 

In a statement, the Faro PSP District Command states that it received an alert at around 4 pm on Saturday, reporting that two men had been stabbed and one detained with a sharp weapon. The two victims received hospital treatment, but their lives were not in danger.

On the same afternoon, the PSP were called to another violent scene in the same location, this time for gunshots. Police agents intercepted the suspected gunman and the firearm was seized. Despite the high risk scenario, no one was injured.

The Judicial Police are carrying out investigations in to both incidents.

 

 

European Election Results

The results of the four-day EU Parliamentary elections across all 27 member states show an overall majority for the centrist parties, despite the predicted surge from the far-right groups.

 

The 720 seats in parliament for the next five years will primarily consist of centre-right candidates with 186 seats, and an alliance of socialists and democrats holding 137.

 

The parliament will be fragmented in that the centrists do not always agree on all matters, and the far-right populists are very much divided in opinions between different countries.

 

It was a fair election with about 630 million eligible voters. The number of candidates was allocated according to each country’s population.

 

Portugal has elected its 21 parliamentarians to serve in Brussels. The socialist group did best with eight seats, and the centre-right have seven. The Left, Renew Europe, and the Identify and Democracy groups each have two. Portugal’s far-right missed out altogether.

 

This has been the ninth EU election held in Portugal.

 

Among the exit poll highlights:

 

The European People’s Party won 186 seats, a gain of 10 over the last parliament.
Socialist groups won 133, down six.
Renew Europe liberals, won 82, down 20.
ECR conservatives and reformists, won 70 seats, up one.

 

The far-right did especially well in Italy where Prime Minister Giorgie Meloni won a strong majority that boosts her leadership both at home and in Europe.

 

Marine Le Pen’s National Rally in France produced a historic win. It has caused President Emmanuel Macron to suddenly and surprisingly dissolve the French parliament and call a snap national election.

 

In Poland, Prime Minister Donald Tusk has said his country is a beacon of hope for Europe as his centrist pro-Europe Civic Coalition did well in the EU elections.

 

In Spain, the Socialist Workers Party is vying for first place with the conservative People’s Party. The hard-right is in third place.

 Written by Len Port 

 

Albufeira and Portimão: 5 youngsters arrested for robberies and drug trafficking

The Criminal Investigation Unit of the GNR of Albufeira and the Public Security Police of Portimão, arrested five young people aged between 17 and 20 years old at the weekend, who were part of a criminal group.

 

The youngsters were suspected of having taken part in robberies and drug trafficking, in the municipalities of Albufeira and Portimão.

 

As part of a robbery report that occurred on May 31st in Albufeira, the GNR carried out several investigations which allowed them to locate and arrest two suspects aged 18 and 20.

Following these arrests, and in coordination with the Public Security Police, it was found that the two detainees belonged to a criminal group, along with three other suspects, all involved in robberies that recently occurred in the cities of Albufeira and Portimão.

 

Police located the three other suspects and after a house search at the residence of one of the individuals, various material related to drug trafficking were seized, namely: 4877 doses of hashish, 166 doses of cannabis, 28 doses of cocaine,  4.9 g of MDMA, a knife, two cell phones, two precision scales and dozens of zip bags.

Following a joint investigation between the PSP and the GNR, the GNR arrested an 18 year old young man for drug trafficking, with the remaining four suspects being detained by the PSP for robberies.

More news next week!

 

Ed

 

The News this week is sponsored by Portugal Pathways:

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COMMUNITY NEWS

Calling the youth of the Algarve - Theatre Workshop - Jun 20th

Fancy a bit of acting? Then join us for a fun evening.  As part of The Algarveans Theatre group’s commitment to the community, professional drama teacher Bethany Blakemore is running a series of three YOUTH THEATRE WORKSHOPS.

 

 

30th Anniversary Celebration of ‘Projecto Novas Descobertas’ - June 22nd

Projecto Novas Descobertas (PND), a local nonprofit that delivers nature-connected learning programs and experiences, is excited to announce that it will soon hold its biggest-ever Open Day to celebrate its 30th anniversary.

 

 

Mar d'Estórias: 8 Years Revealing the Portuguese Soul - June 17th

On our 8th anniversary, we invite all lovers of Portuguese culture to join us in a meaningful celebration. Pass by the century-old Mar d'Estórias building and celebrate throughout June 17th.

 

 

Bella Acapella concert - June 22nd

The award winning Barbershop choir group, Bella Acapella, will perform at the Herdade da Corte country house on Saturday 22nd of June.



 

 

Rotary Club White Night 2024 - June 16th

“A Quinta – Eventos”, located near Santo Estêvão, has been selected again by the Rotary Clubs of Estoi and Olhão , in partnership with Alliance Française, Algarve, to host this iconic 7th Edition of the event. It will be held on Sunday 16th June 2024, from 6:00 pm.

 

 

Quinta Art Collective Exhibition - June 1st to July 7th 2024

Quinta Art Collective's next exhibition will be held from the 1st of June to the 7th of July, at the Associação Cultural Republica 14, in Olhão.



 

 

 

To see more info about events coming up in the next few weeks, check out

My Guide Algarve's event calendar

 

For latest information and advice regarding crime, wildfires and the Covid-19 pandemic, visit the

Safe Communities Portugal website

 

Everything you need to know if you are moving to, living in or visiting the Algarve.

AngloInfo website

 

‍Have a great week, from the Algarve Daily News team!

 

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