The reduction of civilan [sic] personnel at the Lajes US airbase in the Açores could lead to the eventual emigration of 10,000 inhabitants of Terceira island [pop. 55,000].
Studies released by the University of the Açores estimate emigration of between 5,000 and 10,000 people if the US military reduce its operations and associated local personnel to the level it plans and if there is no effort to create jobs in other industries on the remote island.
According to professor Tomaz Dentinho there have been three studies by the University which point to a drop in the gross domestic product of the island of between 8.8% and 12% as a reult [sic] of job losses at the air base.
When adding the wider economic affect of associated job losses the affect on island GDP is doubled.