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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Political, social and economic background and trends


1.Political, social and economic background and trends

Last update: 27 November 2023

Portugal is a democratic republic, situated on the westernmost tip of Europe, boasting a total area of 92 152 km². It is part of the Iberian Peninsula, with Spain to the north and east, and the Atlantic Ocean, where the Azores and Madeira archipelagos are located, to the south and west. Its official languages are Portuguese, "Mirandês" and Portuguese Sign Language.

Portugal is a founding member of the OECD, joined the European Economic Community (EEC) in 1986 and became part of the Eurozone in 1999.

The Education Act establishes universality and equal opportunities as the main goals of the educational system, which is organised as a comprehensive scheme of long schooling, with no vocational choices before ISCED 3.