Portugal's recent pro-business reforms are improving the country's investment potential, according to a survey conducted by Ernst & Young (EY). The EY 2013 Portuguese Attractiveness Survey, which contacted 200 business leaders, shows that nearly 60% see reforms introduced by the government as having a positive impact on the country's investment attractiveness.
Out of the string of reforms introduced since Pedro Passos Coelho's right-wing government came to power in 2011, the new labour law is the most popular, with 73% of EY's respondents seeing it as a move in the right direction. Investors are also positive about the country's economic outlook in the medium to long term. According to the EY survey, 58% of them anticipate that Portuguese economy will improve over the next three years and 95% of those based in the country expect to remain in Portugal over the next 10 years.
Apart from the labour law, according to EY pollsters, the tax burden reduction has been identified as a key area in improving the country's business landscape. To that end, at the beginning of 2014, the Portuguese government introduced a tax reform which aims at simplifying the country's tax regime and decreases the corporate income tax from 25% to 23%.
Foreign investment inflows confirm investors' growing optimism towards Portugal, according to data from greenfield investment monitor fDi Markets. The country recorded 45 new greenfield projects in 2013, a 73% increase on 2012, but still some way down on its pre-crisis average of 66 projects a year.