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A well-connected city,
open to Europe and the world
Porto has an open economy in a privileged location on Europe's West Atlantic coast, with access to high-quality transport and telecom infrastructure, ensuring great connectivity to international markets and global value chains.

A bridge to global markets
Porto lies along the intersection of the world’s major international routes that join Western Europe, Africa, and the Americas. Its coastal location, and reliable infrastructure, combined with Portugal's unique ties to the rest of the world make it an ideal gateway to serve European and global markets.

Companies benefit from access to consumers and businesses in all 31 countries of the European Single Market. The European Union's (EU) growing number of trade agreements grant preferential access to another 70 international markets. In addition, Portugal has strong ties with emerging markets in Portuguese-speaking countries, such as Brazil and Angola, as well as with other large trade partners, like the United States, the United Kingdom and China.

20+ nearshore centers established by multinationals in Porto
in 3 years
Source: InvestPorto (2019-2021)
Same timezone as London and Dublin 1-3-hour difference from most EMEA markets
Porto's unique location facilitates business whether you go West or East. Portugal is the nearest European country to the United States and South America and the only country in continental Europe following Western European Time, the same time-zone as the U.K. and Ireland, which is just one hour behind Central European Time and a 2 to 3-hour time-zone difference from markets as far as Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Brazil.

This adds to the city’s advantages as a prime choice for multinational companies nearshoring their operations. More than 20 multinationals chose Porto as a nearshore location for technology and business service centres between 2019 and 2021, with investments from companies such as BMW, Volkswagen, Continental, Natixis, BNP Paribas, Euronext, Microsoft, Kantar, Farfetch and Revolut.

Transports and urban mobility 
Porto ensures great accessibility to Europe and the rest of the world. Thanks to its compact urban structure, high population density, as well as the clustering of some of Portugal’s main export industries around the region, Porto benefits from close access to all modes of passenger and freight transport. The city's main transport hubs are located just 10 to 30 minutes from Porto’s historic centre and central business district.

Transport infrastructure

The Port of Leixões is the main harbor for Portuguese industrial exports. Connected to over 180 countries, it handles 21% of Portugal's seaborne trade and is the busiest port in the country in terms of ship traffic. It is considered one of the most efficient and competitive multipurpose ports on the Iberian Peninsula. Its facilities include two container terminals, which are undergoing expansion works to gradually increase capacity to 1.7 million TEUs per year by 2025, and a 60-hectare logistics platform that connects cargo flows to Portugal's extensive road and railway networks, as well as to Porto International Airport located just 2 km away. The harbor's Porto Cruise Terminal, which has garnered numerous international awards for its modern architecture and design, can accommodate large cruise ships, up to 300 meters long. It handled more than 100 cruise ship movements in the first half of 2022.

#1 busiest port in Portugal by number of ships handled per year Source: IMT (2021)
100+ destinations with non-stop flights from Porto International Airport Source: FlightConnections (Dec/2022)
The Porto International Airport is the fastest-growing airport in Portugal and the country's second largest. It is increasing its capacity to handle up to 20 million passengers annually, and offers regular non-stop flights to 120 destinations in Europe, North America, Brazil, Africa, and the Middle East, including major international hubs such as London, Paris, Frankfurt, and New York. Flights to other major European cities generally take less than 3 hours. The airport also has one of the highest passenger satisfaction ratings in Europe and received the title of Best Airport in Europe in the 10-25 million passenger category at the 2022 ACI Europe Best Airport Awards.

Non-stop flights from Porto International Airport 

The public transport system of Porto is reliable, eco-friendly and affordable, featuring an extended metro, train and bus network that covers the entire Metropolitan Area. It ranks as the best in the country according to the European Customer Satisfaction 2020 Index for Portugal.

The Metro of Porto has six lines with a total of 82 stations, designed by local Pritzker Architecture Prize winner Souto Moura. The city is expanding the system with a €772 million project, co-funded by NextGenEU, which includes the construction of two new lines and 15 stations, increasing the total length of the metro network to 78 km and making it the largest in the country.

Porto's public transport system also includes the Campanhã Intermodal Terminal, a crucial interface for passenger transportation in northern Portugal. The terminal is designed to improve connectivity between different modes of transportation, making it easier for people to travel to and from the city for both short and long distance trips.

Digital connectivity
According to a recent report by the European Commission, Portugal has become a top performer in terms of fast broadband  (NGA) coverage and fixed Very High-Capacity Network (VHCN) coverage. This achievement has been attributed to a combination of public and private investment, as well as increased competition among internet service providers in the country. In addition, Portugal's overall communications technology has been ranked the 8th best in the world by the 2022 World Digital Competitiveness ranking by IMD. A 2022 survey by EY also found that close to two-thirds of investors find Portugal's telecommunications infrastructure attractive, with the quality of infrastructure being considered one of the country's main attractiveness factors.

#8 best communications technology in the world Source: IMD (2022)
111 Mbps median download speed in Porto (fixed broadband) Source: Speedtest (Nov/2022)
The city of Porto, in particular, boasts citywide fiber-to-the-home coverage and a reliable 4G/5G mobile network, with median internet speeds that place it among the top 25 cities in Europe with fastest internet, according to the Speedtest Global Index. Another standout feature of the city's telecommunications infrastructure is its extensive public WiFi network, which is one of the largest in Europe. There are hundreds of free hotspots available throughout the city in parks, buses, and stations.

Porto has been recently selected by the European Commission to spearhead the EU's Connected and Automated Cross-border Mobility (CAM) strategy. As part of this initiative, Porto is currently at the center of one of the largest EU-backed experiments of 5G technology, which is testing one of the first 5G corridors for automated driving in Europe with live trials of vehicle-to-everything 5G infrastructure on the motorways linking Porto to the city of Vigo in Spain.
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