At the inauguration of the new governing bodies of NERBE/AEBAL, on June 17 in Beja, José Eduardo Carvalho listed the challenges that David Simão, the new president, will face: “the first is the associative fragmentation. There are 1064 business associations in this country. One for every 375 companies. These 1,064 business associations compete for the representation of 380 thousand commercial companies that deliver HEIs. This is the membership market. Second, it also faces a weak recruiting capacity for associates and companies. Phenomenon that happens across the country. This makes us reflect on whether the problem is companies' alienation – in practice, it is our customers – or whether it is the usefulness and the low value of our work and activity. This is a reflection that needs to be done. Then, we are seeing that the core of multi-sector business associations is invaded daily by an overlapping of activities and actions. Whether by clusters, CIM, universities, public bodies, foundations. All compete in the same space and in the same market. And with the same companies”.

The president of the AIP was intrigued by "we are watching this with complacency and resignation" and pointed out those reasons to justify that "the moment is for reflection on the strategic repositioning of associations, on their core, social utility, funding and their sustainability, and quality of the operational management that exists in the associations. And also a reflection on their activity and action priorities”.

José Eduardo Carvalho wished luck and resilience to the new president of NERBE because “he will work in a situation that combines the effects of the pandemic crisis with the great uncertainty of the evolution of the economic cycle, with the pressure of epidemiologists who want to forcefully regress and impose more sacrifices the economy. And in a complex and difficult associative context, in which it is necessary to rethink the quality of management and the competitiveness of companies”.