Portugal’s economy is based on industries such as textiles, clothing, and footwear. Major industries also include oil refineries, automotive, cement production, pulp and paper industry, and cork (of which Portugal is the world’s leading producer).

Export: Manufacturing accounts for 33% of exports. Portugal is the world’s fifth-largest producer of tungsten, and the world’s eighth-largest producer of wine (Port wine and Madeira wine are exported worldwide). Portugal has also a strong tradition in the fisheries sector and is one of the countries with the highest fish consumption per capita.

The vineyards that produce Port wine

The vineyards that produce Port wine - source

Import: Generally Portugal is developed country and its exportation of products is greater than the import. That is why it was difficult to find some examples of import. The principal import for Portugal is mainly gas, petrol, transportation – vehicles and food. Most imports come from the European Union countries of Spain, Germany, France, Italy and the United Kingdom.

Although unemployment is about 8% today, the number of unemployed people is increasing since 2000. As of May 2006, over 420,000 people were unemployed in Portugal.

The unemployment rate in the country was 7,7%. In 2007 the unemployment rate reached 8.4%, the highest unemployment rate in Portugal since 1987. The average European Union unemployment rate decreased to a record low of 7.3% in 2007.

On the other hand in the Portuguese sub-region of Vale do Ave, the unemployment rate has reached 15%, and in the Penísula de Setúbal sub-region 12.5%.

The average wage in Portugal is € 804.22 per month, and the minimum wage, which is regulated by law, is € 426 per month.

Portugal has the lowest per capita GDP in Western Europe and is among the lowest in the European Union. GDP per capita is 22,677 USD.

The governments are working to change Portugal’s economic development model from one based on public consumption and public investment to one focused on exports, private investment, and development of the high-tech sector.

The Global Competitiveness Report for 2005, published by the World Economic Forum, places Portugal on the 22nd position.

Research on standard of living ranks Portugal as the country with the 19th-best quality of life world-wide