Portuguese citizens protest because of the housing crisis

Portuguese citizens protest because of the housing crisis

Mon, April 03, 2023

Tens of thousands of people have protested in the Portuguese capital of Lisbon and other major cities as housing prices and rents skyrocket as people struggle to make ends meet.

"There is a massive housing crisis going on and this is a humanitarian emergency." Rita Silva, an official from the housing company Habita, said at a demonstration in Lisbon.

Portugal is one of the poorest countries in Western Europe, and while the minimum wage is set at 760 euros a month, more than 50 percent of workers earn less than 1,000 euros a month.

In Lisbon, which attracts a large number of foreign tourists, rents have risen by 65 percent since 2015, while house prices have risen by 137 percent during that period. In the past year alone, rents in Lisbon have risen by 37 percent, outstripping Barcelona and Paris.

"Even with my salary, which is higher than the average person in Lisbon, I couldn't afford to rent an apartment because it was so expensive," said Nancy Renzi, a marketing executive from Italy.

The rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Lisbon is €1,350.