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Visita ao Centro de Formação  Profissional de Setúbal,  no âmbito da 6ª jornada do Roteiro para uma Economia Dinâmica dedicada à Educação e Formação Profissional
Visita ao Centro de Formação Profissional de Setúbal, no âmbito da 6ª jornada do Roteiro para uma Economia Dinâmica dedicada à Educação e Formação Profissional
Setúbal, 11 de setembro de 2015 see more: Visita ao Centro de Formação  Profissional de Setúbal,  no âmbito da 6ª jornada do Roteiro para uma Economia Dinâmica dedicada à Educação e Formação Profissional


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Speech by the President of the Republic on his Visit to Rio Maior County
Rio Maior, 3 February 2016

I was very pleased to accept the invitation of Her Honour the Mayor to visit Rio Maior today.

Throughout the last ten years I have journeyed in our Country, I have contacted thousands of Portuguese and held frequent meetings with the many Mayors. I can vouch as to how their knowledge akin to reality is irreplaceable for the purpose of taking political decisions. Many of the decisions taken by the Government or by the Administration can only be materialized via the local authorities.

I can equally vouch for a change in the attitudes of the local authorities throughout the years, derived from the development of the Country’s reality. Nowadays, local authorities are, more than ever, dynamic agents, actively involved in the creation and support for development opportunities, in the strengthening of the Counties’ productive bases and on the availability of the local endogenous resources, on the preservation of the environment, on the reinforcement of tourist activities, on the preservation and recovery of our wealthy cultural heritage. All this, however, with accrued consciousness of the need for a careful management of public funds.

Portugal 2020 Programme attributes to local authorities a catalytic role which, anyway, is vital for their success. It is their responsibility not just to take advantage of resources to advance their initiatives but, above all, to show local investors the availability of these funds to motivate job creation, energizing local economy and the country’s economy as a whole.

Madam Mayor,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

In this visit I have contacted with diverse realities of Rio Maior which clearly show the new dimensions which I have been visualizing in the visits I have held throughout the Country: tourism development, as exemplified by the Salt Mines, the stake placed on innovation and on entrepreneurial excellence, as shown in the Nobre manufacturing facility and the stake placed on diversification, well represented in this Sports Complex.

In a valley, 30 kilometres from the sea, there is an underground river the dissolves rock salt. The water is brought to the surface where, in an authentic live museum more than 800 years old, salt is extracted and packaged. Most of that high quality salt is sold for export.

The surrounding area is peculiar, showing a unique human activity and a very particular way of life. What is outstanding is the well preserved housing, made up wooden buildings, where the wood acts as protection against salt induced corrosion. Even the locks and the keys are made of wood.

This is an unparalleled phenomenon whereby the Rio Maior salt mines have become the ex-libris of the County, and attract many thousands of tourists. The valuing of this tourist destination has been promoted with excellent results and has given rise to entrepreneurialism, to placing stakes on creativity and excellence.

I have fortunately found, throughout these ten years, fine examples of entrepreneurialism, of stakes placed on innovation and excellence, on the products’ extreme quality. I have met genial people, who assume the risk of transforming good ideas into profitable businesses, in that which is a new entrepreneurial culture of a well prepared generation, ready to overcome difficulties.

And I met sound entrepreneurial projects, such as is the case with Nobre, which I visited earlier, nowadays belonging to an international economic complex. This company represents, with its investment in Rio Maior, a fundamental base for the local economy. The success of the Portuguese economy, as I have referred at different times, will largely depend on success in exports and in private investment: Private investment, with what it represents in job creation, in export capability and in economic development must be greeted and properly welcomed.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Sports have been a source of happiness for the Portuguese and a factor of Portugal’s international prominence. For this reason I have dedicated special regard to it throughout my mandates.

Timely, the Rio Maior Council created, with optimism, confidence and vision, the foundations of the Sports City. Nowadays, Rio Maior’s Sports Complex is an exemplary. Here, all sports facilities are connected to the schools complex, offering the County’s students the best possible conditions to develop mens sana in corpore sano.

The training Centre, in its turn, attracts numberless practitioners, an occupancy that already registers 57 national teams of 23 different sports activities, and 42 foreign, from 30 countries and 4 continents. I actually believe that a series of medals for the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games, to be held in the current year, commenced being prepared here. We hope that some may be Portuguese medals.

The Municipal Stadium has magnificent conditions proven by its continuous use by the younger national teams. Support for athletics has provided the country with excellent participant, an outstanding example of which is walker Susana Feitor. She was European and World junior champion. She took part in five editions of the Olympic Games. All Portuguese recognize and admire her.

In addition to this are the grass sports training grounds, the Sports Park and the Olympic Swimming Pool. This entire complex regularly hosts national and international competitions. This organizational effort infrastructure set up is complemented by the Rio Maior Higher Sports School. Created in 1998, it has, since 2013, excellent facilities of its own, offers its students diverse graduate and masters’ degrees, in addition to applied research in sports.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I promoted, in the past month of May, a Tribute to Portuguese Sports. I wanted to express to national sportsmen the recognition of the Portuguese for their successes and I also addressed those that are not often staged, but without which the victories achieved would not have been possible, meaning, of course, the federation and association officers, the managers, the support and technical personnel, and the staff of the sports organizations. Without them, without their discrete work and their dedication, it would not have been possible for Portugal to have achieved the successes it has celebrated.

In this context, we cannot ignore the importance of sports for Portugal’s tourist attractiveness and for the prominence of our external image. Sports encompasses a material component and its potential contribution both for economic activity and for the human development of a nation cannot be ignored..

Everybody nowadays recognizes the economic potential of the sports industry and the relevance of training the best technicians in this area. It is surely not by chance that there are several Portuguese amongst the best sportsmen and managers in the world. In Rio Maior investment was carried out, before others, in a promising area. The need was for optimism, vision and setting goals high.

And it is with this note of appreciation and encouragement that I reiterate my satisfaction for the visit which I had the opportunity to pay to Rio Maior today, and thus express my best wishes for the future of this County

Thank you very much.

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