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Notable Interest from Hong Kong Citizens Looking to Relocate to Portugal

Notable Interest from Hong Kong Citizens Looking to Relocate to Portugal

The Consulate General of Portugal in Macau and Hong Kong have recently expressed the noticeable increase in the interest from citizens currently living in the former British colony wanting to relocate to Portugal. 


Consul Paulo Cunha-Alves explained that the growth has been taking place “basically since June last year” which is when Hong Kong registered “large scale violent pro-democracy demonstrations that resulted in a great social, financial and economic impact”.


He went on to stress “This year, we saw an increase again, which was remarkable”. As Portugal has been noted by The Global Peace Index as the third safest country in the world to live in, the notable increase in interest comes as no surprise with many individuals from around the world aiming to move for a better quality of life. 


“People have to apply for a criminal record and for that they have to use the services of the consulate and it is on this basis that we have some statistics on the number of people who have ‘gold visa’ and residence requests in Portugal that, between January and end May, it will have been around 1,100”, said the Consul.


He did, however, stress that “it is not yet noticeable” if the information gathered reflected the reaction to the announcement made by China that it will impose the national security law on Hong Kong. This announcement has already resulted in more street protests as it is interfering in the semi-autonomous territory. 


A company who specialises in obtaining Portugal’s Golden Visas advised that since Beijing’s announcement, requests for information from Hong Kong soared. The co-founder of Golden Visa Portugal Limited, Kieron Norris, explained, “the number of requests for information has skyrocketed, we have dozens of people calling every day” because “everyone is very concerned with what is happening”. 



Nothing is set in stone as of yet but the national security law that is being proposed would prohibit “any act of treason, separation, rebellion, subversion against the Central People’s Government, theft of state secrets, the organization of activities in Hong Kong by foreign political organizations and the establishment of links with political organizations. Hong Kong political organizations”.


When Hong Kong was handed back to China from British control back in 1997 it was done under a unique agreement - a mini-constitution called the Basic Law and a so-called "one country, two systems" principle - which is leaving many citizens worried the new law will impact their freedom of speech and their judicial system will start to resemble China’s resulting in many traditional Hong Kong residents looking to acquire property in Portugal.


In addition to this, English expatriates living in Hong Kong, who not only have uncertainties in the city but also with Brexit, no longer want to return to their homeland and so are choosing to come to Portugal as it is renowned as being a safe and peaceful country.