Bruno Texeira had been fascinated by Asia since childhood. “Asia contains almost 50% of the world’s population,” he explains. “It is the factory of the world and provides much of the raw material.”
It was this fascination that led him to INOV Contacto, a training programme organised by the Portugeuse Institute of Foreign Trade and co-funded by the ESF. Launched in 1997, the programme allows young professionals to combine a three-month training period in Portugal with a six-month work placement in Asia.
Bruno’s work placement was in Jakarta, Indonesia. “The placement was very good for contacts,” he recalls. “I met decision-makers and influential people. I found out more about the region and the opportunities in the Indonesian market for European companies.”
He also met a potential partner and, a year or so later, they launched Trading EuroPacific (TEP consulting), which helps Portugeuse companies to sell in Asian markets and vice versa. “The cultural differences between the EU and Asia make it difficult for companies to get access to each others’ markets,” Bruno shares. “I decided to set up a business to bridge both continents.”
It’s not just Bruno who has benefited from INOV Contacto’s support during the last two decades. Over 5,000 young people have taken part in internships abroad, helping to both boost their skills and to raise the profile of Portuguese companies internationally.
Want to find out more? Check out the links below:
About the project
Entrepreneurship support (ESF website)
Entrepreneurial skills (Entrepreneurship Competence Framework)
- Publication date
- 20 November 2017
- Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion