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Mountainous north of the Tagus River, rolling plains in south


Maritime temperate; cool and rainy in north, warmer and drier in south


Nationality: Portuguese (singular and plural) 
Population: 10,813,834 (July 2014 est.) 
Languages: Portuguese (official), Mirandese (official, but locally used)  


Roman Catholic 81%, other Christian 3.3%, other (includes Jewish, Muslim, and other) 0.6%, none 6.8%, unspecified 8.3% Note: represents population 15 years of age and older (2011 est.) 


Portugal has become a diversified and increasingly service-based economy since joining the European Community (the EU's predecessor) in 1986. The economy grew by more than the EU average for much of the 1990s, but the rate of growth slowed in 2001-08. The economy contracted in 2009, and fell again from 2011 to 2013, as the government implemented spending cuts and tax increases to comply with conditions of an EU-IMF financial rescue package, signed in May 2011.

Living Conditions

Over half of all Portuguese rent their homes. Rural villagers often live without electricity or running water. Migration to the cities made an already existing shortage of urban housing worse. It also resulted in the growth of shantytowns (bairros da lata) which lack sewage systems. In response to this situation, the Portuguese government has instituted a $2 billion program to clear these slums and build low-income housing units.


Republic; parliamentary democracy

US Military Presence/Support






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