Industry group insists short-term Airbnb-style letting is not the main cause of Portugal's housing problems
Four out of ten tourists who come to Portugal stay in Airbnb-style short-term rentals, according to a new study from tourist rental association ALEP and the Nova School of Business and Economics.
But Nuno Trigo, ALEP Director and Head of the Porto and North Branch, says insufficient construction is mainly to blame for the country's housing problems - and not the tourism sector.
"Almost 40% of the tourism stays in the short-term rental in Portugal," says Trigo. "It's a huge impact. In GDP, we have also this number of 3.8% of the GDP in Portugal is from the short-term rental the local accommodation.
"We don't deny that we have a real housing problem in Portugal, and we don't deny also that short-term rental can be one of the sectors of the activities that can have some impact. But for us, this is not the biggest problem in housing in Portugal. First of all, you have a problem of the offer. You are not building that much.
"If you close all the short-term rental properties that you have nowadays in Portugal, we need to build more than 1,000 hotels in this real moment to accommodate all the tourists that's come to Portugal nowadays. So, it's impossible."