The World Factbook (1990)/Portugal

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World Factbook (1990) Portugal.jpg

See regional map V and VII


Total area: 92,080 km²; land area: 91,640 km²; includes Azores and Madeira Islands

Comparative area: slightly smaller than Indiana

Land boundary: 1,214 km with Spain

Coastline: 1,793 km

Maritime claims:

Continental shelf: 200 meters or to depth of exploitation
Extended economic zone: 200 nm
Territorial sea: 12 nm

Disputes: Macau is scheduled to become a Special Administrative Region of China in 1999; East Timor question with Indonesia

Climate: maritime temperate; cool and rainy in north, warmer and drier in south

Terrain: mountainous north of the Tagus, rolling plains in south

Natural resources: fish, forests (cork), tungsten, iron ore, uranium ore, marble

Land use: 32% arable land; 6% permanent crops; 6% meadows and pastures; 40% forest and woodland; 16% other; includes 7% irrigated

Environment: Azores subject to severe earthquakes

Note: Azores and Madeira Islands occupy strategic locations along western sea approaches to Strait of Gibraltar


Population: 10,354,497 (July 1990), growth rate 0.3% (1990)

Birth rate: 12 births/1,000 population (1990)

Death rate: 10 deaths/1,000 population (1990)

Net migration rate: 1 migrants/1,000 population (1990)

Infant mortality rate: 14 deaths/1,000 live births (1990)

Life expectancy at birth: 71 years male, 78 years female (1990)

Total fertility rate: 1.5 children born/woman (1990)

Nationality: noun—Portuguese (sing. and pl.); adjective—Portuguese

Ethnic divisions: homogeneous Mediterranean stock in mainland, Azores, Madeira Islands; citizens of black African descent who immigrated to mainland during decolonization number less than 100,000

Religion: 97% Roman Catholic, 1% Protestant denominations, 2% other

Language: Portuguese

Literacy: 83%

Labor force: 4,605,700; 45% services, 35% industry, 20% agriculture (1988)

Organized labor: about 55% of the labor force; the Communist-dominated General Confederation of Portuguese Workers—Intersindical (CGTP-IN) represents more than half of the unionized labor force; its main competition, the General Workers Union (UGT), is organized by the Socialists and Social Democrats and represents less than half of unionized labor


Long-form name: Portuguese Republic

Type: republic

Capital: Lisbon

Administrative divisions: 18 districts (distritos, singular—distrito) and 2 autonomous regions* (regiões autónomas, singular—região autónoma); Açores*, Aveiro, Beja, Braga, Bragança, Castelo Branco, Coimbra, Evora, Faro, Guarda, Leiria, Lisboa, Madeira*, Portalegre, Porto, Santarém, Setúbal, Viana do Castelo, Vila Real, Viseu

Dependent area: Macau (scheduled to become a Special Administrative Region of China in 1999)

Independence: 1140; independent republic proclaimed 5 October 1910

Constitution: 25 April 1976, revised 30 October 1982; new discussions on constitutional revision began October 1987

Legal system: civil law system; the Constitutional Tribunal reviews the constitutionality of legislation; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

National holiday: Day of Portugal, 10 June

Executive branch: president, Council of State, prime minister, deputy prime minister, Council of Ministers (cabinet)

Legislative branch: unicameral Assembly of the Republic (Assembléia da República)

Judicial branch: Supreme Tribunal of Justice (Supremo Tribunal de Justiça)

Leaders: Chief of State—President Dr. Mário Alberto Nobre Lopes SOARES (since 9 March 1986);

Head of Government—Prime Minister Anibal CAVAÇO SILVA (since 6 November 1985); Deputy Prime Minister (vacant)

Political parties and leaders: Social Democratic Party (PSD), Anibal Cavaço Silva; Portuguese Socialist Party (PS), Jorge Sampaio; Party of Democratic Renewal (PRD), Herminio Martinho; Portuguese Communist Party (PCP), Alvaro Cunhal; Social Democratic Center (CDS), Diogo Freitas do Amaral

Suffrage: universal at age 18

Elections: President—last held 16 February 1986 (next to be held January 1991); results—Dr. Mário Lopes Soares 51.3%, Prof. Diogo Freitas do Amal 48.7%;

Assembly of the Republic—last held 19 July 1987 (next to be held July 1991); results—Social Democrats 59.2%, Socialists 24.0%, Communists (in a front coalition) 12.4%, Democratic Renewal 2.8%, Center Democrats 1.6%; seats—(250 total) Social Democrats 148, Socialists 60, Communists (in a front coalition) 31 seats, Democratic Renewal 7, Center Democrats 4

Communists: Portuguese Communist Party claims membership of 200,753 (December 1983)

Member of: CCC, Council of Europe, EC, EFTA, FAO, GATT, IAEA, IATP, IBRD, ICAC, ICAO, ICES, ICO, IDB—Inter-American Development Bank, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, INTELSAT, INTERPOL, IOOC, IRC, ISO, ITU, IWC—International Wheat Council, NATO, OECD, UN, UNESCO, UPU, WEU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WSG

Diplomatic representation: Ambassador Joao Eduardo M. PEREIRA BASTOS; Chancery at 2125 Kalorama Road NW, Washington DC 20008; telephone (202) 328-8610; there are Portuguese Consulates General in Boston, New York, and San Francisco, and Consulates in Los Angeles, Newark (New Jersey), New Bedford (Massachusetts), and Providence (Rhode Island); US—Ambassador Edward M. ROWELL; Embassy at Avenida das Forcas Armadas, 1600 Lisbon (mailing address is APO New York 09678-0002); telephone [351](1) 726-6600 or 6659, 8670, 8880; there are US Consulates in Oporto and Ponta Delgada (Azores)

Flag: two vertical bands of green (hoist side, two-fifths) and red (three-fifths) with the Portuguese coat of arms centered on the dividing line


Overview: During the past four years, the economy has made a sustained recovery from the severe recession of 1983-85. The economy grew by 4.7% in 1987, 4.1% in 1988, and 3.5% in 1989, largely because of strong domestic consumption and investment spending. Unemployment has declined for the third consecutive year, but inflation continues to be about three times the European Community average. The government is pushing economic restructuring and privatization measures in anticipation of the 1992 European Community timetable to form a single large market in Europe.

GDP: $72.1 billion, per capita $6,900; real growth rate 3.5% (1989 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 11.8% (1989 est.)

Unemployment rate: 5.9% (1989 est.)

Budget: revenues $19.0 billion; expenditures $22.2 billion, including capital expenditures of $3.1 billion (1989 est.)

Exports: $11.0 billion (f.o.b., 1988); commodities—cotton textiles, cork and cork products, canned fish, wine, timber and timber products, resin, machinery, appliances; partners—EC 72%, other developed countries 13%, US 6%

Imports: $17.7 billion (c.i.f., 1988); commodities—petroleum, cotton, foodgrains, industrial machinery, iron and steel, chemicals; partners—EC 67%, other developed countries 13%, less developed countries 15%, US 4%

External debt: $17.2 billion (1988)

Industrial production: growth rate 5.5% (1988)

Electricity: 6,729,000 kW capacity; 16,000 million kWh produced, 1,530 kWh per capita (1989)

Industries: textiles and footwear; wood pulp, paper, and cork; metalworking; oil refining; chemicals; fish canning; wine; tourism

Agriculture: accounts for 9% of GDP and 20% of labor force; small inefficient farms; imports more than half of food needs; major crops—grain, potatoes, olives, grapes; livestock sector—sheep, cattle, goats, poultry, meat, dairy products

Aid: US commitments, including Ex-Im (FY70-88), $1.8 billion; Western (non-US) countries, ODA and OOF bilateral commitments (1970-87), $998 million

Currency: Portuguese escudo (plural—escudos); 1 Portuguese escudo (Esc) = 100 centavos

Exchange rates: Portuguese escudos (Esc) per US$1—149.15 (January 1990), 157.46 (1989), 143.95 (1988), 140.88 (1987), 149.59 (1986), 170.39 (1985)

Fiscal year: calendar year


Railroads: 3,613 km total; state-owned Portuguese Railroad Co. (CP) operates 2,858 km 1.665-meter gauge (434 km electrified and 426 km double track), 755 km 1.000-meter gauge; 12 km (1.435-meter gauge) electrified, double track, privately owned

Highways: 73,661 km total; 61,599 km paved (bituminous, gravel, and crushed stone), including 140 km of limited-access divided highway; 7,962 km improved earth; 4,100 km unimproved earth (motorable tracks)

Inland waterways: 820 km navigable; relatively unimportant to national economy, used by shallow-draft craft limited to 300-metric-ton cargo capacity

Pipelines: crude oil, 11 km; refined products, 58 km

Ports: Leixões, Lisbon, Porto, Ponta Delgada (Azores), Velas (Azores), Setúbal, Sines

Merchant marine: 50 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 576,654 GRT/1,005,740 DWT; includes 1 short-sea passenger, 21 cargo, 2 refrigerated cargo, 1 container, 1 roll-on/roll-off cargo, 10 petroleum, oils, and lubricants (POL) tanker, 2 chemical tanker, 1 liquefied gas, 10 bulk, 1 combination bulk; note—Portugal has created a captive register on Madeira (MAR) for Portuguese-owned ships that will have the taxation and crewing benefits of a flag of convenience; although only one ship is currently known to fly the Portuguese flag on the MAR register, it is likely that a majority of Portuguese flag ships will transfer to this subregister in a few years

Airports: 69 total, 64 usable; 37 with permanent-surface runways; 1 with runways over 3,659 m; 11 with runways 2,440-3,659 m; 8 with runways 1,220-2,439 m

Telecommunications: facilities are generally adequate; 2,250,000 telephones; stations—44 AM, 66 (22 relays) FM, 25 (23 relays) TV; 7 submarine cables; communication satellite ground stations operating in the INTELSAT (2 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean), EUTELSAT, and domestic systems (mainland and Azores)

Defense Forces

Branches: Army, Navy, Air Force

Military manpower: males 15-49, 2,583,782; 2,102,835 fit for military service; 88,384 reach military age (20) annually

Defense expenditures: $1.3 billion (1989 est.)