The minister expressed a desire to learn about the new developments that Portuguese groups A4F and Green Aqua had to share, as well as the projects they are jointly developing with Algora for the future. This positive environment was also enhanced by the presence of Vila Franca de Xira’s Mayor, Fernando Paulo Ferreira, and Vice-President Marina Tiago.
In the presentation to the government official, CEO Manuel Gil Antunes outlined the profile of A4F and Green Aqua groups and how they positioned themselves to acquire Solvay Portugal. He recalled Solvay's history of divestment in Póvoa and described the industrial transformation process initiated in 2021 with HyChem as a paradigm shift towards new biobased products and a circular economy model.
It has been a challenging journey, particularly due to the substantial increase in electricity prices. However, the organization has remained committed to R&D projects.
Investments to be noted include solar energy production for self-consumption and green hydrogen, demonstrated through projects like H2Hub, recognized for support under the PRR (Recovery and Resilience Plan). Additionally, the development of a 100% Portuguese water electrolyzer with Tecnoveritas and the submission of the HyChemLowC project as a PRR application deserve special mention.
The presentation, complemented by a site visit, focused on the challenges and opportunities facing the organization, with particular emphasis on creating a Circular Economy Biocluster along the industrial line, spanning approximately 12 km on the right bank of the Tagus River, both south and north of Póvoa de Santa Iria.
For the industries in the region, this represents an opportunity to access renewable energy sources, as well as the treatment of their wastewater and the capture and reuse of CO2 through innovative biobased solutions, similar to what ALGATEC offers.
An ambitious and future-oriented collaborative approach, in perfect alignment with the principles of circular economy, will greatly reduce the ecological footprint of industrial activities in the Loures and Vila Franca de Xira region.
Minister Duarte Cordeiro expressed his impression and promised the best collaboration from his ministry in terms of legal frameworks, studies, and support as needed.