The Republic of Portugal (amtl. República Portuguesa) is a European state in the west of the Iberian Peninsula. As westlichster point of continental Europe, the country in the east and the north of Spain is bounded on the west and south against the Atlantic Ocean. For Portuguese territory includes the islands of the Azores and Madeira (with Porto Santo). Founded in the 12th century Kingdom of Portugal rose in the 15th century a great power and played a key role in the age of discoveries. The Kingdom has created one of the largest colonial empires with possessions in Africa, Asia and South America, the decline was, however, already heralded during the 17th century. 1910 came by a military uprising to overthrow the Portuguese monarchy, the King Manuel II. Forced into exile. The First Portuguese Republic joined on 5 October 1910 in force and existed until the military coup of General Gomes da Costa in 1926. Then the country for more than forty years was under the authoritarian dictatorship of António de Oliveira Salazar. The Carnation Revolution of April 25, 1974 led to the fall of the regime and opened the way to democratic Third Republic. Portugal is a founding member of NATO (1949) and OECD (1948) and also a member of the United Nations (since 1955), the Council of Europe (since 1976) and the Schengen Agreement (since 1991). 1 January 1986 Portugal joined together with Spain to the European Communities (EC), which later became the EU was created. then Portugal was considered the poorest country in the EC. Portugal is also one of the founding countries of the euro zone. After introduction of the Euro (1999), real interest rates fell. Large capital inflows contributed to years of economic growth; nevertheless decreased productivity. The banking and financial crisis since 2008 had in Portugal impact on the real economy (recession). In October 2009, the Greek sovereign debt crisis became known; From 2010, Portugal was ranked among the PIIGS countries. As part of the Euro crisis, the EFSF was established in June 2010; they said Portugal in May 2011 grants amounting to 78 billion euros. The unemployment rate in 2013 was 16.4 percent, per capita GDP was 15,800 euros, the national debt was the end of 2013 1.28 times higher than the GDP of 2013. For a long time, Portugal was a country of emigration; important centers of Portuguese culture in the Diaspora, there are now in France and in the US (where each about 1 to 2 million Portuguese live) as well as in Brazil, Angola, Mozambique, Switzerland and Luxembourg. Most important bilateral partner countries are Brazil and Spain. Tourism is an important source of income. With 17 million tourists a year (2015) Portugal is one of the most visited countries in the world most common destinations are the Algarve and the region around the capital Lisbon. The country is known for wine growing next to it, especially for the port, and as the world's most important production country for raw cork.
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