How the official narrative of "all is well in the land of europhilia", as spewed forth by every Portuguese government, would come apart at the seams, if only people cared less about football, sunny holidays at the beach, reality shows, and the private lives of celebrities. And, of course, should there be any actual jobs (read production) in this country, rather than State-serving desk positions, duly rigged crony contracts and part-part-part-time menial chores paid at one-zillionth of what a single bureaucrat makes in a day.
A brief summary of the real problems that will shape the short-term fiscal and broadly social future of a parochial, alienated nation; part of the information contained in this post first appeared as a newspiece here.
According to recent estimates conducted among the resident population in Portugal, the number of live births fell further in 2013, to 82.787, or 7.9% lower than in 2012. Portugal lost nearly 60,000 people that year, due mainly to a further decrease in the number of live births.
The natural balance remained negative in 2013 (23,756 fewer people), whereas back in 2003 there was a surplus of 3720 people. Although the number of deaths fell one percent, from 107,598 in 2012 to 106,543 in 2013, for the last decade, the synthetic fertility rate - the average number of live births per woman over a year - showed "a tendency to decline, albeit with slight oscillations", reaching a new all time low: 1.21 children per woman, according to data provided by the national statistics institute (INE).
Life expectancy has been increasing continuously, to 82.79 years (women) in 2011-2013 and to 76.91 years (men) but INE data also shows evidence of continuing and more acute demographic aging as a result "of the birth decline, increasing longevity and, more recently, the impact of emigration".
According to INE, the aging index increased from 106 to 136 elderly per 100 young people. In 2013 the resident population in Portugal was estimated at 10,427,301 people (4,958,020 men and 5,469,281 women), representing a decrease of the resident population of 59988 inhabitants over the previous year.
The meaning contained in the following sections is presented as a self-evident adjuvant for whatever creative efforts our readers might wish to form as an exercise in pessimistic, or rather, realistic precognition.
Further reading #1: Labor Force in Portugal, 2014.
Further reading #2: Portugal has almost two million pensioners, or 20% of total population.
Further reading #3: 560 thousand State employees engross Portugal's fiscal burden.
Further reading #4: Portuguese electoral lists contain over 1 million dead voters.
One final consideration: a total of 122.470 voluntary abortions were carried out until last year, since abortion was decriminalized in 2007, by the Portuguese taxpayer-funded National Healthcare Service; these numbers provide the ultimate indicator for the correlation between a free-ride mentality, which is dominant in present-day portuguese society, and the perpetual accounting predicament faced by public and private debtors, now and for the foreseeable future - regardless of how many times we may be given the chance to see the world through the pink-tinted lenses of State and Union propaganda such as "anticipated IMF reimbursements" or "unemployment reversal". Caveat emptor.