Commitment for a strong economy
Since 2013, Tomás Moreira has been President of the AFIA (Association of Automotive Suppliers) in Portugal. This promotes the growth and the competitiveness of the Portuguese automotive industry with respect to costs, Industry 4.0 etc.
Thereby, the increase of work flexibility is an important goal—a tough battle facing the government relying on extremely left-wing parties. “The current legal framework in Portugal does not yet allow companies to adjust their operation to order fluctuations quickly, non-bureaucratically and without additional costs. Although Portugal has the lowest wage level in Western Europe, we still compete with countries with even lower costs, especially Morocco. An excessive inflation of the unit wage costs as well as a decrease of the work flexibility would imply an even greater decline of our competitiveness. The countries, which we directly compete with, would profit and our companies would suffer from that. The result would be a loss of orders, job cuts and a decrease in investments”, said Tomás Moreira in an interview with the Portuguese magazine Vida Económica.
Since the end of 2016 Tomás Moreira has represented the Association in the new Portuguese cluster of the automotive industry. In this function, he sits on the board together with representatives of the five OEMs (VW, PSA, Renault, Toyota and Daimler/Mitsubishi Trucks) which are active in Portugal. “We meet on a monthly basis, and by now I have good contacts and a trustworthy relationship to the most important managers of these OEMs”, says Tomás Moreira.
The Association allows a close cooperation between OEMs, suppliers, machine manufacturers and service providers as well as universities, educational institutes, research institutes, laboratories and state institutions. KIRCHHOFF Automotive Portugal is a member of this Association. Every three years the member companies, including KIRCHHOFF Automotive Portugal, vote for the board, consisting of five representatives.
The most important goal of the Association is to establish a further OEM plant in Portugal in order to expand the local market. This would for sure also have positive impacts on KIRCHHOFF Automotive in Portugal.