“An opportunity to put Portugal at the forefront”

At the launch of the second phase of the i4.0 Programme, the Prime Minister considered this package of initiatives an opportunity for Portugal to place itself at the forefront of Europe.

The second phase of the Government’s i4.0 Programme will provide 600 million Euros over two years. The initiative aims to requalify and train more than 200 thousand workers, involving about 20 thousand companies, with tangible results within ten years. It is also planned to finance more than 350 mobilizing projects. The programme is currently approximately halfway through its term.

António Costa, Prime Minister of Portugal, said, on the occasion, that the programme aims to digitalize the Portuguese economy and that, with this, the country can set off “on the front line” for the “fourth industrial revolution” and join Europe’s leading platoon before 2030. In the lead are countries like Finland, Sweden, Holland or Denmark.

The phase two of the i4.0 Programme was presented on April 9, as part of the Industry of the Future Fair, at the Azurém University Campus, at the of Minho, in Guimarães.

Among other measures, the Government wants to “create jobs adapted to the new reality”.

The public presentation of the programme was preceded by the 5th meeting of the Strategic Committee of the Platform Industry 4.0, chaired by the Deputy Minister for Economy, Pedro Siza Vieira. Also present were the Secretary of State for the Economy, João Correia Neves, the councillor of the Guimarães City Council, Ricardo Jorge Costa, and the pro-rector for Institutional Evaluation and Special Projects at the University of Minho, Guilherme Borges Pereira.

This committee is composed of a group of public and private entities that has been monitoring the execution of the activities of the i4.0 Platform, whose second phase was shared and then presented to the public.

The main objectives and measures of this second phase of the Industry 4.0 programme were presented by the Director-General of COTEC Portugal, Jorge Portugal.

He recalled, as has been defended by the association over the last few years, that the Industry of the future “will have to be more sustainable, more intangible, more digital and more circular”, but also with “more and better jobs”, he added.

There are eleven areas of action, each composed of a set of measures that involve adapting people’s knowledge to the new reality, promoting the sharing of knowledge, experiences and benefits and, last, but not least, promoting and financing the access of companies to experiment with i4.0 methods and technologies.

The training of workers and businessmen

The training of workers is one of the banners of this second phase of the programme. Pedro Siza Vieira really highlighted the need for training people so that all Portuguese people  “can participate in this path of change” and, thus, can find dignity at work and from a salary point of view. The requalification also includes entrepreneurs who are less suited to digital transformation who “need to be supported and trained” for this revolution. As summarized by the Dinheiro Vivo article..

At the occasion, João Correia Neves explained that the executive intends to “restructure the Capitalize credit line, allocating 100 million to support digitalization”. This change also results from the lessons learned from the first phase, which served to mobilize and raise awareness and “demonstrated that we need a more profound response”, according to the news report in the Público newspaper. In total, 600 million Euros of investment will be mobilized in two years. [refer to clipping of the event and to interviews the day before in Negócios]

Sharing experiences and knowledge

The meeting also served to share experiences among the participants. To this end, parallel sessions were held on pressing topics such as cyber security, artificial intelligence, financing, electronic commerce, smart factories and Work 4.0. These are topics that organizations that want the country to be at the forefront must carefully analyze.

Companies that are already using technologies from the Industry 4.0 universe explained how they are following this path of i4.0 through their own experiences. This was the case of DRT – Protótipos e Moldes, Lda, Artnovion and Introsys.

Related news:

“Government relaunches Industry 4.0, Industry asked for a State 4.0” >> Público News Report

“Government starts stage II of Industry 4.0” >> ECO News Report

“Portugal may start on the front line for the 4th Industrial Revolution” >> ECO Newspaper Report

“Portugal wants to be among the frontrunners in Europe until 2030” >> Dinheiro Vivo News Report

“Costa hopes to see Portugal as one of Europe’s frontrunners” >> RTP Video

“Portugal invests 600 million Euros in the next  2 years to digitalize the economy” >> Diário do Minho News Report

“Government wants to create work positions adapted to the new reality” >>  Renascença News Report