Plummeting population threatens economic recovery
Portugal’s falling working age population is proving a major stumbling block to a rapid economic recovery say experts.
According to Jornal Económico (full access by subscription), the unemployment rate fell in the second quarter, but the impact of the pandemic on tourism and the increase in global competition in the age of teleworking are of concern to the experts reports the business daily.
The country’s number of unemployed could grow by 227,000 people by the end of the year according to statistics from the Bank of Portugal (BdP) and the National Statistics Institute (INE).
The data reveals that the value registered in the second quarter of 2020 may grow by around 80% putting Portugal’s unemployment rate at half a million by the end of the year for a country with a population of 10 million of which around 5 million are of working age.
Assuming the 10.1% unemployment rate that the BdP estimates for the end of the year in its June economic bulletin, and using the latest INE data on the labour market which points to 278,000 unemployed at the end of the second quarter, the number of jobseekers by the end of the year could be 506,000, well above the 352,000 registered at the end of last year.
The analysis includes the decline in the working population, which saw its lowest value since records began in 2011, with just over 5 million people and this despite influxes of immigrants over the past 20 years from Brazil, Ukraine, China, Moldova and European Union countries.