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Last update: 26.10.2010


Area: 92,391 sq. km
Capital city: Lisbon (pop. metropolitan area 2.1 mln)
Population: 10,676,910 (Jul, 2008 est.)
Annual growth rate: 0.305% (2008 est.)
Language: Portuguese
Literacy: 93.3% (2004)
Government type: Republic
Neighboring countries: Spain
Memberships: EU, NATO, UN, OSCE, CPLP
Currency: Euro


GDP: € 169 billion (approx. $228 billion) (2008 est.)
Annual growth rate: 0.8% (2008 est.)
GDP per capita (PPP): € 15,945 (approx. $21,547) (2008 est.)
GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 8.2%, industry: 25.4%, services: 66.4% (2007 est.)
Major industries: textiles, clothing, footwear, wood and cork, paper, chemicals, auto-parts manufacturing, base metals, diary products, wine and other foods, porcelain and ceramics, glassware, technology, telecommunications
Inflation: 2.3% (Oct, 2008)
Unemployment: 8% (2007 est.)
Labor force: 5.6 million (2008 est.): Government and services (60%); industry and manufacturing (30%); agriculture and fishing (10%)
Trade (2007): Exports: € 37.5 billion (approx. $50.6 billion):
Imports: € 57 billion (approx. $77 billion):
FDI: € 30 billion; Jan-May 2010: € 13,6 billion (+3,2%):
Main sectors: wholesales and retail, real estate, transforming industries
FDI abroad: € 12.3 billion

With a population of 10.6 million and a GDP of € 155.2bn (about £124.3bn) Portugal has some of the greatest potential for development and investment of any of the current EU members. Since it's accession to the EU in 1986, Portugal's economy has expanded rapidly and annual average GDP growth has been well above the EU average, despite a recent slowdown.
Most of the country's trade is with countries of the European Union. 77% of Portugal's imports are from other EU countries and 80% of it's exports are destined there. Portugal remains a member of EFTA, jointly her second trading partner, taking 9% of exports and providing 6% of imports. Overall the country's main suppliers are Spain, Germany, France, Italy and the UK. The principal Portuguese export markets are Spain, Germany and France.
Portuguese industry is characterised by small and medium enterprises. 85% of them average 15 employees or less and most are family-owned concerns. Following the 1974 revolution many of the country's major industries, both manufacturing and services, were taken into public ownership. Since 1987 a series of privatisations has returned most back to private ownership, and in some cases to former owners. The State still retains a handful of large concerns, which it intends privatising as soon as possible.
The country's most important activities are tourism, fabrication of transport equipment, textiles and clothing, footwear, electrical equipment, manufacturing and mechanical engineering.
Portugal is currently benefiting from a major injection of EU funding to bring its infrastructure up to the standards of other EU countries. Portugal will be granted over 22,5 billion Euros from EU funding for the period of 2007-2013. Infrastructure schemes include thousands of kilometres of new motorways; upgrading of main railway lines; redevelopment of the ports of Lisbon, Oporto and Setubal; expansion of the Lisbon metro and building a new light railway in Porto; modernising the water system; improvements to post and telecommunication systems; and new hospitals, schools and housing.
Portugal has two Autonomous Regions that have their own parliament, government and administrative apparatus: Madeira and Azores
Portugal runs a significant structural trade deficit.
According to OECD estimates, Portugal will be among the Western European countries whose economy least will suffer from the looming 2009 recession. While the once booming economies of nations such as Spain and Ireland will contract by 0.9 percent and 1.1 percent respectively in the coming 12 months, the Portuguese economy will experience a downturn in economic growth of only 0.2 percent next year before seeing its economy expand by 0.6 percent in 2010.


• Airports – new Lisbon airport, upgrade of the current one (Portela)
• Healthcare - €5.6bn earmarked for public-private partnership projects
• Railways – high-speed rail link and new rail connections to main ports
• Financial Services
• Renewable Energy – estimated €8bn investment
• Communications
• Environment
• Food & Drink
• Ports – ports redevelopment projects
• Security
• Tourism

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