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Portugal Country Guide

Explore Portugal in Europe

Portugal with the capital city Lisbon is located in Europe (Southwestern Europe, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean). It covers some 92,392 square kilometres (slightly smaller than Indiana) with 10,676,000 citizens.

Map of the area of  in

The topography includes mountainous north of the Tagus River, rolling plains in south. The average density of population is approximately 116 per km². The notable climate conditions in Portugal can be described as maritime temperate with cool and rainy in north, warmer and drier in south. Possible natural disasters include Azores subject to severe earthquakes.

To reach someone in Portugal dial +351 prior to a number. There are 4,049,000 installed telephones. And there are 15,178,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of 900, 1800 MHz and 3G. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".pt". If you want to bring electric equipment on your trip (e.g. laptop power supply), note the local power outlet of 230V - 50Hz.

About the flag and history of Portugal

Two vertical bands of green (hoist side, two-fifths) and red (three-fifths) with the national coat of arms (armillary sphere and Portuguese shield) centered on the dividing line; explanations for the color meanings are ambiguous, but a popular interpretation has green symbolizing hope and red the blood of those defending the nation.

Following its heyday as a global maritime power during the 15th and 16th centuries, Portugal lost much of its wealth and status with the destruction of Lisbon in a 1755 earthquake, occupation during the Napoleonic Wars, and the independence of its wealthiest colony of Brazil in 1822. A 1910 revolution deposed the monarchy; for most of the next six decades, repressive governments ran the country. In 1974, a left-wing military coup installed broad democratic reforms. The following year, Portugal granted independence to all of its African colonies. Portugal is a founding member of NATO and entered the EC (now the EU) in 1986.


Geography Quick-Facts

Summary Continent: Europe
Neighbours: Spain
Capital: Lisbon
Size 92,391 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 35,672 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
slightly smaller than Indiana
Population 10,676,000
Currency Name: Euro, Currency Code: EUR
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD) .pt
Telephone Country Prefix +351
Mobile Phone Connections 15,178,000
Landline Phone Connections 4,049,000

Country Position in World Rankings

Information about single country attributes and how these compare against the rest of the world. The information below is compiled with data from 2013. As such, it may differ a bit to the Information above in the text (which is from 2010).

Geography

Value name Value World Rank
Area 92,090 (sq km) 111

People and Society

Value name Value World Rank
Population 10,799,270 80
Population growth rate 0.15 (%) 179
Birth rate 9.59 (births/1,000 population) 199
Death rate 10.91 (deaths/1,000 population) 40
Net migration rate 2.82 (migrant(s)/1,000 population) 31
Maternal mortality rate 8.00 (deaths/100,000 live births) 163
Infant mortality rate 4.54 (deaths/1,000 live births) 188
Life expectancy at birth 78.85 (years) 49
Total fertility rate 1.51 (children born/woman) 189
Health expenditures 11.00 (% of GDP) 20
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate 0.60 (%) 63
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS 42,000 60
HIV/AIDS - deaths 500 82
Obesity - adult prevalence rate 24.00 (%) 69
Education expenditures 5.80 (% of GDP) 46
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24 30.1 (%) 23

Economy

Value name Value World Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity) 250,600,000,000 52
GDP - real growth rate -3.20 (%) 213
GDP - per capita (PPP) 23,800 65
Labor force 5,480,000 73
Unemployment rate 15.30 (%) 148
Distribution of family income - Gini index 39 71
Investment (gross fixed) 16.10 (% of GDP) 131
Taxes and other revenues 44.5 (% of GDP) 28
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) -6.00 (% of GDP) 172
Public debt 119.70 (% of GDP) 9
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 2.90 (%) 73
Central bank discount rate 1.75 (%) 124
Commercial bank prime lending rate 5.71 (%) 146
Stock of narrow money 86,550,000,000 38
Stock of broad money 298,300,000,000 31
Stock of domestic credit 390,400,000,000 31
Market value of publicly traded shares 82,000,000,000 46
Industrial production growth rate -2.00 (%) 156
Current account balance -6,000,000,000 168
Exports 57,800,000,000 57
Imports 67,030,000,000 46
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold 21,340,000,000 56
Debt - external 508,300,000,000 26
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home 128,200,000,000 31
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad 64,250,000,000 32

Energy

Value name Value World Rank
Electricity - production 50,300,000,000 (kWh) 52
Electricity - consumption 47,810,000,000 (kWh) 47
Electricity - exports 3,191,000,000 (kWh) 36
Electricity - imports 5,814,000,000 (kWh) 35
Electricity - installed generating capacity 17390000 (kW) 42
Electricity - from fossil fuels 48.3 (% of total installed capacity) 160
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants 23.3 (% of total installed capacity) 84
Electricity - from other renewable sources 22.5 (% of total installed capacity) 5
Crude oil - production 1,926 (bbl/day) 94
Crude oil - imports 205,400 (bbl/day) 33
Refined petroleum products - production 237,000 (bbl/day) 52
Refined petroleum products - consumption 259,700 (bbl/day) 49
Refined petroleum products - exports 49,650 (bbl/day) 59
Refined petroleum products - imports 83,520 (bbl/day) 53
Natural gas - consumption 5,212,000,000 (cu m) 59
Natural gas - imports 5,181,000,000 (cu m) 33
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy 51,430,000 (Mt) 60

Communications

Value name Value World Rank
Telephones - main lines in use 4,530,000 36
Telephones - mobile cellular 12,335,000 64
Internet hosts 3,748,000 28
Internet users 5,168,000 45

Transportation

Value name Value World Rank
Airports 65 77
Railways 3,319 (km) 53
Roadways 82,900 (km) 54
Waterways 210 (km) 96
Merchant marine 109 48

Military

Value name Value World Rank
Military expenditures 2.30 (% of GDP) 60

Data based on CIA facts book 2010 & 2013, wikipedia, national statistical offices and their census releases

List of current world heritage sites

Name Since
Alto Douro Wine Region
Wine has been produced by traditional landholders in the Alto Douro region for some 2,000 years. Since the 18th century, its main product, port wine, has been world famous for its quality. This long tradition of viticulture has produced a cultural la ...
2001
Central Zone of the Town of Angra do Heroismo in the Azores
Situated on one of the islands in the Azores archipelago, this was an obligatory port of call from the 15th century until the advent of the steamship in the 19th century. The 400-year-old San Sebastião and San João Baptista fortifications are uniqu ...
1983
Convent of Christ in Tomar
Originally designed as a monument symbolizing the Reconquest, the Convent of the Knights Templar of Tomar (transferred in 1344 to the Knights of the Order of Christ) came to symbolize just the opposite during the Manueline period – the opening up o ...
1983
Cultural Landscape of Sintra
In the 19th century Sintra became the first centre of European Romantic architecture. Ferdinand II turned a ruined monastery into a castle where this new sensitivity was displayed in the use of Gothic, Egyptian, Moorish and Renaissance elements and i ...
1995
Garrison Border Town of Elvas and its Fortifications
The site, extensively fortified from the 17th to 19th centuries, represents the largest bulwarked dry-ditch system in the world. Within its walls, the town contains barracks and other military buildings as well as churches and monasteries. While Elva ...
2012
Historic Centre of Évora
This museum-city, whose roots go back to Roman times, reached its golden age in the 15th century, when it became the residence of the Portuguese kings. Its unique quality stems from the whitewashed houses decorated with azulejos and wrought-iron balc ...
1986
Historic Centre of Guimarães
The historic town of Guimarães is associated with the emergence of the Portuguese national identity in the 12th century. An exceptionally well-preserved and authentic example of the evolution of a medieval settlement into a modern town, its rich bui ...
2001
Historic Centre of Oporto
The city of Oporto, built along the hillsides overlooking the mouth of the Douro river, is an outstanding urban landscape with a 2,000-year history. Its continuous growth, linked to the sea (the Romans gave it the name Portus, or port), can be seen i ...
1996
Landscape of the Pico Island Vineyard Culture
The 987-ha site on the volcanic island of Pico, the second largest in the Azores archipelago, consists of a remarkable pattern of spaced-out, long linear walls running inland from, and parallel to, the rocky shore. The walls were built to protect the ...
2004
Laurisilva of Madeira
The Laurisilva of Madeira is an outstanding relict of a previously widespread laurel forest type. It is the largest surviving area of laurel forest and is believed to be 90% primary forest. It contains a unique suite of plants and animals, including ...
1999
Monastery of Alcobaça
The Monastery of Santa Maria d'Alcobaça, north of Lisbon, was founded in the 12th century by King Alfonso I. Its size, the purity of its architectural style, the beauty of the materials and the care with which it was built make this a masterpiece of ...
1989
Monastery of Batalha
The Monastery of the Dominicans of Batalha was built to commemorate the victory of the Portuguese over the Castilians at the battle of Aljubarrota in 1385. It was to be the Portuguese monarchy's main building project for the next two centuries. Here ...
1983
Monastery of the Hieronymites and Tower of Belém in Lisbon
Standing at the entrance to Lisbon harbour, the Monastery of the Hieronymites – construction of which began in 1502 – exemplifies Portuguese art at its best. The nearby Tower of Belém, built to commemorate Vasco da Gama's expedition, is a remind ...
1983
Prehistoric Rock Art Sites in the Côa Valley and Siega Verde
The two Prehistoric Rock Art Sites in the Côa Valley (Portugal) and Siega Verde (Spain) are located on the banks of the rivers Agueda and Côa, tributaries of the river Douro, documenting continuous human occupation from the end of the Paleolithic A ...
1998
University of Coimbra – Alta and Sofia
Situated on a hill overlooking the city, the University of Coimbra with its colleges grew and evolved over more than seven centuries within the old town. Notable university buildings include the 12th century Cathedral of Santa Cruz and a number of 1 ...
2013