1 March 2022

The continuing conflict in Ukraine dominates all outlets. Some report on the repatriation of Portuguese citizens who had fled Ukraine, while some mention the preparations being made across the country to welcome and accommodate refugees from Ukraine. Portugal will contribute up to €10 million towards the EU’s €450m aid package for the Kyiv government. A number of outlets report on the death of senior PS politician Rocha Andrade of cancer at the age of 51.

Lusa reports that FM Augusto Santos Silva welcomed the arrival in Lisbon of the first 38 Portuguese and Luso-Ukrainian citizens from Ukraine via Romania. RTP adds that about 40 Portuguese citizens in Ukraine are still to be brought back to Portugal.

Público picks up a Lusa report in which Defence Minister João Gomes Cravinho states Portugal will contribute €8-10 million towards the European arms package for Ukraine, with the exact figure being announced “in a few weeks”.

Expresso and DN cite Lisbon Mayor Carlos Moedas announcing the capital’s plan to offer aid and support to the city’s Ukrainian population under the banner “Lisbon is with Kyiv”. Speaking during a meeting with Ukraine’s ambassador, Inna Ohnivets, he said the city has created a team to coordinate a support plan for Ukrainians and that it will open the Monsanto municipal dining hall to support Ukrainians trapped in the capital and create an emergency reception centre for refugees from that country in a Municipal Police pavilion. DN further reports solidarity movements springing up across the country, with Lisbon, Gaia, Vagos, Guarda and Baião announcing they will welcome refugees from Ukraine. Lusa reports that the northern city of Braga is preparing to receive 30 Ukrainian refugees from Poland and Romania at the end of this week. A number of outlets, including RTP, report the return from Ukraine of former Shaktar Donetsk coach Paulo Fonseca, who spoke about the first days of fighting.

Expresso reports on criticism of Rui Rio from within the PSD for warning the EU should guard against the economic consequences before pushing ahead with a new package of sanctions on Russia, with leading figures within the party saying Rio was not speaking for them. Rio responded by saying Europe’s sanctions should be heavier, and that every effort should be made to minimise the effect of the sanctions on the EU economy. 

CNN PT reports on the continuing rise in fuel prices, with the price at the petrol pumps rising for the ninth time since the beginning of the year, with no end in sight to the upward trend as the price of a barrel of oil prices continues to rise. It reports that a litre of petrol and diesel currently costs €1.83 and €1.67, respectively, compared to €1.28 and €1.16 a year ago. 

Dinheiro Vivo cites Environment Minister João Pedro Matos Fernandes reassuring the public that Portugal has  “very comfortable reserves” of gas, as well as “90-day public reserves” of fuel, in the face of possible constraints due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, adding that the country “does not depend at all on the pipeline that comes from Russia”. However, Expresso claims that the Sines terminal will receive a delivery of LNG from the Russian ship, the Vladimir Vize, on 5 March, which will be the first delivery from this source since October.

Expresso notes that the government is planning to inject €150 million from the Environmental Fund to offset the impact of fuel price rises on families and businesses. Speaking specifically about the price of gas, Environment Minister João Pedro Matos Fernandes said that direct support, tax benefits or the creation of a credit line for sectors that most depend on natural gas to maintain production were on the table.

Negócios states the Portuguese biomass power company Greenvolt has agreed to purchase 35% of German company MaxSolar for €26 million. MaxSolar is described as being one of the leaders in the development, implementation and management of photovoltaic and battery storage projects in the German and Austrian markets, with Greenvolt’s CEO João Manso Neto saying, “This acquisition is a very significant step for Greenvolt in one of the most important renewable energy markets in the world, namely solar. Greenvolt’s entry into Germany through MaxSolar makes us an important player in this market.”

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