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Visa programmes

Tech Visa

Tech Visa is a fast-track visa programme managed by the Portuguese Public Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation (IAPMEI) that streamlines the process of recruiting highly qualified workers from outside the EU/EEA countries or Switzerland.

It targets tech and innovative companies established in Portugal that intend to:
  • Recruit highly qualified professionals who are non-EU nationals and do not reside permanently in the European Union;
  • Transfer company workers (managers, specialists and trainees) from outside the EU.

Tech Visa certified companies benefit from access to fast-track procedures to obtain residency visas for employees recruited from abroad, which they can use to recruit up to 50% of their workforce. The contracts signed with the recruited employees must have a minimum duration of 12 months, with a minimum salary equivalent to 2.5 times the IAS (Indexante dos Apoios Sociais) currently in place.


Companies intending to become Tech Visa certified must ensure that they meet a list of requirements. Namely, they must:
  • Be legally constituted;
  • Not have debts with Social Security and the fiscal administration;
  • Not have delayed salaries;
  • Not be undergoing a process of restructuring;
  • Have a positive shareholder equity, as shown in the latest Simplified Business Information statement (Informação Empresarial Simplificada – IES). This only applies to companies that have been established in Portugal for more than 3 years;
  • Have a permanent establishment in Portugal;
  • Develop an activity whose exercise requires specialized and exceptional technical skills;
  • Produce goods and services with an aim towards internationalization.

The application submitted by each company to become Tech Visa certified must also obtain a positive grade on each of the following metrics:
  • Market potential;
  • Aim towards external markets.

In order to apply for a visa or residence permit under the Tech Visa programme, companies must also ensure that their candidates comply with a list of specific requirements. Namely, candidates must:
  • Have no criminal record;
  • Have their tax obligations met;
  • Be at least 18 years old;
  • Have successfully completed a Bachelor’s degree. Should they have completed a professional technical course instead, they must also have at least 5 years’ experience in performing specialized technical functions;
  • Candidates should also be proficient in Portuguese, English, French, or Spanish, as well as master a language level suitable to the functions/duties to be performed.

How to obtain

Companies can apply online (in Portuguese only) for a Tech Visa certificate. IAPMEI provides a detailed step-by-step guide of the whole application procedure.

Learn more

Please visit IAPMEI’s website to learn more about Tech Visa benefits and requirements. You can also gather more information about the Programme by reading its relevant and updated legislation.