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Economy of Portugal

The Economy of Portugal is of a mixed nature and functions in support of a high income country.Portugal ranked 38th in the the WEF's Global Competitiveness Report for 2015-2016. Portugal's ranking continuously felt from 2005 to 2013 (with the exception of 2011), but recovered from the 51st position in 2013 to the 36th in 2014.

The Portuguese Economy has been steady, expanding continuously since the third quarter of 2014, with a yearly GDP growth of 1.5% registered in the second quarter of 2015. The economy growth has been accompanied by a continuous fall in the unemployment rate (11.9% in the second quarter of 2015, compared with 13.9% registered in the end of 2014). The Government budget deficit has also been reduced from the 11.2% of GDP in 2010 to 4.8% in 2014. These rates mark an inversion from the negative trends caused by the impact of the Financial Crisis of 2008 in the Portuguese Economy, that made it to shrink for three consecutives years (2011, 2012 and 2013), accompanied by a high increase of the unemployment rate (that achieved a record of 17.7% in the early 2013). The crisis has caused a wide range of domestic problems that are specifically related to the levels of public deficit, as well as the excessive debt levels, in the economy, culminating in the confirmation from Portugal to a €78 billion financial bailout from the EU in April 2011, following similar decisions from Greece and Ireland. The government that assumed office in June 2011 had to face tough choices in regard to its attempts to stimulate the economy while at the same time seeking to maintain its public deficit around the EU average.

Portugal is home to a number of notable leading companies with worldwide reputations, such as Portucel Soporcel, a major world player in the international paper market; Sonae Indústria, the largest producer of wood-based panels in the world; Amorim, the world leader in cork production; Conservas Ramirez, the oldest canned food producer; Cimpor, one of the world's 10th largest producers of cement; EDP Renováveis, the 3rd largest producer of wind energy in the world; Jerónimo Martins, consumer products manufacturer and retail market leader in Portugal, Poland and Colombia; TAP Portugal, highly regarded for its safety record, and one of the leading airlines linking Europe with Africa and Latin America (namely Brazil).

Sectors

Fisheries and agriculture now account for about 2.4% of the GDP, down from approximately 25% in 1960, while still employing 9.9% of the labour force. On the other hand, the tertiary sector has grown, producing 74.4% of the GDP and providing jobs for 65.9% of the working population. The industry sector accounts for 23.1% of the GDP and providing jobs for 24.2% of the working population.

Natural resources

Natural resources such as forests cover about 34% of the country, namely pine trees (13,500 km2), Cork Oak (6800 km2), Holm Oak (5,340 km2), and Eucalyptus (2,430 km2).Cork is a major production, Portugal produces half of the world's cork. Significant mining resources are lithium, tungsten, tin, and uranium.

Agriculture

A considerable part of continental Portugal is dedicated to agriculture, although it does not represent most of the economy. The south has developed an extensive monoculture of cereals and olive trees and the Douro Valley in vineyards.

Fisheries

The Portuguese fishing industry is fairly large and diversified. Fishing vessels classified according to the area in which they operate, can be divided into local fishing vessels, coastal fishing vessels and long-distance fishing vessels.

Industry

The major industries in Portugal include: oil refinery, petrochemistry and cement industries, machinery, automotive and shipbuildingindustries, electrical and electronics industries, injection moulding, plastics and ceramics industries, textile, footwear and leather industries, beverages and food industries and furniture, pulp and paper, wood and cork industries.

Energy

In 2013, 61,7% of the energy produced was renewable, including 30.4% hydroelectric, 24.1% from wind, 5.2% from biomass, 0.9% solar energy and 1.1% from other renewable energy sources, particularly geothermical energy in the Azores. From the beginning, Portugal has opted not to invest in Nuclear Power, so there are not any plants of that kind in the country.

Services

The tertiary sector has grown, producing 74.4% of the GDP and providing jobs for 65.9% of the working population. The most significant growth rates are found in the trade sector, due to the introduction of modern means of distribution, transport and telecommunications.Tourism has developed significantly and generates approximately 5% of the wealth produced in Portugal.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Economy Of Portugal"

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