A city still getting back on its feet after the Eurozone crisis which battered the national economy, Lisbon's working hard to support home-grown businesses and attract fledgling entrepreneurs from around the globe.
Over the last three years the council's support for start-ups has helped the city win the title of 2015 European Entrepreneurial Region of the Year. At the same time, it’s also undergone a facelift: crumbling city centre properties have been renovated and new shops and cafes have opened, as workers return.
“The change has been dramatic,” said Rui Coelho, executive director of InvestLisboa, Lisbon’s investment promotion agency. “We saw all-time record investment in real estate, tourism and entrepreneurship in 2015. This is fantastic. However, we’re not complacent. Unemployment is still very high and regarding rehabilitation of the city centre there is still a lot to be done.”
Although unemployment nationally has dropped from a high of 17.5% in 2013 at the end of 2015 it was still running at 12.2% of the population.