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Country Profile of Portugal

Main statistical agency
Main statistical agency name
Statistics Portugal - Instituto Nacional de Estatística, IP (INE)
Web address
Position in the government
The Statistics Portugal reports to a Minister (Minister of Presidency) who is also President of the High Statistical Council.
Organizational structure and finance
The Administration Board has a President and two Vice-presidents. There are 6 departments:
Department of Administration and Management
Department of Methodology and Information System
Department of Data Collection
Department of Demographic and Social Statistics
Department of National Accounts
Department of Economic Statistics
Multi-annual or annual work program
There is a Strategic work plan for the period 2008-2012, as well as annual work programmes. There is a business plan for 2010 posted on the website.
Main duties
Statistical information is nowadays an essential form of knowledge necessary for full citizenship, promoting scientific research on issues with relevance for our society, indispensable in decision-making for the societies’ progress and in economic and social development incentive.

Statistics Portugal is the main entity responsible for ensuring the production and dissemination of official statistics against the background of independence and permanent vigilance with regard to the emergence of new requirements.

It was created in 1935 and has its head office in Lisbon, in the same building (by the architect P. Pardal Monteiro) inaugurated in the year of its setting-up. Delegations have been established in Porto, Coimbra, Évora and Faro.

Statistics Portugal is a public institute which has administrative autonomy and technical independence in the exercise of its official statistical activity. In its capacity as national statistical authority, it may require information to be reported, which shall be mandatory and free of charge, safeguarding respect for statistical confidentiality.

Statistics Portugal integrates the National Statistical System and the European Statistical System.

Statistics Portugal activity is firmly anchored in principles established at an international level, namely: the European Statistics Code of Practice, prepared in accordance with the “Fundamental principles of official statistics” of the United Nations Statistical Commission; the International Monetary Fund’s Special Data Dissemination Standard.

Brief history and other relevant background information
Brief history and other relevant background information
Organisms which preceded the Statistics Portugal (INE)

o The Superintendence of Contraband and Embezzlement of Royal Claims in this Kingdom and its Realm seems to have been the first organism to regularly produce statistics since it began organizing, since 1775, trade statistics, such as General Balance-sheets for the Kingdom of Portugal with its Realm and with Foreign Nations.

o 1841 - It was only in this year and with a delay in relation to the Europe context, that it was created an organism to systematically produce the official statistics of national interest. Therefore within the Public Works Ministry it was set up the Section of Statistics and Topography. This is why some feel that the first official statistical service was created in this year.

o 1857 - The Central Statistical Committee of the Kingdom was set up with the objective of "organizing the general plan for Statistics in all branches of public administration, overseeing its execution and centralizing the publication of the statistical works".

o 1859 - The Section of Statistics and Topography was replaced by the Statistical Department.

o 1864 - The Central Statistical Committee gives place to the General Statistical Council.

o 1869 - The General Statistical Council was extinguished and the Central Statistical Committee was reinstated.

o 1887 - The Central Statistical Committee was transformed into the High Council of Statistics.

o 1898 - Creation of the Directorate-General of Statistics and National Resources giving up of the decentralisation criterion of 1892.

o 1911 - The Directorate-General of Statistics was transformed into the Directorate-General of Statistics and Inspection of Joint-stock Companies. Yet in the same year, became known simply as the Directorate-General of Statistics, the first real ancestor of the National Statistical Institute (INE). NSI's Creation - A landmark in the history of Portuguese Statistics

o 1935 - The National Statistical Institute is created and for the first time the Basic Principles of the official statistical activity were established constituting a real National Statistical System.

The High Council of Statistics from the previous legislation was extinguished and instead 12 new Technical Committees of Statistics were created. .

o 1966 - A restructuring was carried out with the aim of reaffirming the guiding principles, introducing the principle of statistical co-ordination and the creation of an entity responsible for overseeing the National Statistical System, which is the High Council of Statistics.

o 1973 - Restructure of the NSI based on the creation of regional delegations.

o 1986 - Creation of the Committee for Restructuring the National Statistical System.

o 1989 - The most complete restructure of the National Statistical System and of NSI took place based on the government laws.

o 2007 - Decree-Law no 166/2007, of May 03– It approves the organisation of Statistics Portugal.

o 2008 - This law lays down the principles, rules and structure of the National Statistical System (NSS):

- Law nº 22/2008,(Official newspaper No 92, Series I of 13 May 2008)- General Foundation of the National Statistical System.

Legal basis
Legal basis
o Law nº 22/2008,(Official newspaper No 92, Series I of 13 May 2008) - General Foundation of the National Statistical System.

o Decree-Law No 166/2007, (D.R. No 85, Series I of 3 May 2007) - It approves the organisation of Statistics Portugal.

o Executive Order No 662-H/2007, (Official newspaper No 105, Series I, Suplement of 31 May 2007) and Executive Order No 839-B/2009, (Official newspaper No 147, 1st Serie of 31 July 2009)- It approves the Statutory Laws of Statistics Portugal, which define its internal organisation.

o Law No 67/98 (Official newspaper No 247, Series I-A of 26 October 1998) - Law on the Protection of personal data (it transposes into the national legislation Directive 95/46/CE of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 October 1995 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data).

o Decree-Law No 202/2006 (Official newspaper No 208, Series I of 27 October 2006) - Presidency of the Council of Ministers It approves the Organic Law of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers.

Other producers of official statistics
Other producers of official statistics
- Statistical services of Ministries with delegated powers by INE

- Regional Statistical Office of Azores (SREA)

- Regional Directorate of Statistics of Madeira (DREM)

- Central Bank

Statistical advisory bodies
Statistical advisory bodies
Statistical Council (CSE)

The Statistical Council is a consultative body of the State which guides and coordinates the National Statistical System (NSS). It defines and approves five-year general guidelines of official statistical activity, appraises the annual plan and budget of the statistical activity of statistical authorities and the respective progress report.

It has an important role in approving technical statistical coordination instruments of mandatory use in the production of official statistics, and promote the respective understanding, publication and use, with the possibility of proposing that the Government extends this imperative use to general government and issues recommendations within the scope of the definition of statistical methodologies, concepts and nomenclatures for the use of administrative records to produce official statistics.

The Statistical Council ensures respect for the principle of statistical confidentiality on the part of entities requesting confidential information and decides on proposals to release data subject to statistical confidentiality.

Before the approval of decree-laws setting up statistical services or containing rules governing statistical activities the Statistical Council must be consulted.

It is chaired by the Minister responsible for the Instituto Nacional de Estatística, I.P. – Statistics Portugal, presently the Minister for the Presidency. Its Vice-Chairperson is the Chairperson of Statistics Portugal.

32 members represents different areas:
Statistics Portugal, Banco de Portugal, Regional Services of Statistics (2), Public Services (5), Personal Data Protection Authority (1), Association of Municipalities (1), Employer´ Confederations (4), Union Confederations (2), Consumer Protection (1), Universities (2), Personalities of recognized scientific merit and independence (5) and Entities delegated by Statistics Portugal (7) to produce official statistics.

o Further information about the Statistical Council powers, composition, structure and approved documents can be consulted at the website:

Data collection
Most recent population census
12 March 2001
Access to administrative data
Automatic transfer of data resulting from administrative procedures:

The utilisation of data resulting from administrative procedures is a major concern among official statistics producers. The “Simplified Business Information” was recently created in Portugal, and translates into the delivery by enterprises, at a single moment in time and in electronic format, of a wide variety of annual data, that is relevant for statistical and tax purposes and for accountability. For enterprises, this represents a significant cut in costs associated with compliance with legal obligations.

Within this context, there is also the Civil Registration Information System (SIRIC) which allows INE to receive electronically the data resulting from administrative procedures of the Civil Registry Office.
Data confidentiality
a) The methodology for confidentiality protection is based on not publishing data related to less than 3 units.

b) Individual data can be disclosed, in some cases, on the base of agreement of the Statistical Council. However, it is not possible to disclose individual data related with households or individuals.

Data dissemination
Release calendar (existence, when and how published)
There is a dissemination plan with the annual for releasing publications. In addition, there is a weekly plan revision that establishes the releasing days for dissemination on the following week.

Media-oriented service:

Statistics Portugal offers the media a service oriented to journalists’ specific requirements, providing support in the consultation and clarification of the information provided, as well as in obtaining “tailor-made” information through the Communication and Image Service.
- e-mail:
Main publications
Main publications and data services (for details see website ):

•of Statistical Indicators - Calendar referring to the real sector and to the international trade, foreseen in "International Monetary Fund's Dissemination Standards Bulletin Board"
•of Statistical Data available now and in the future
•of INE's Press Releases - Weekly forecast of Press Releases dissemination to the press

The access to all information on website - is free of charge.


•Key Figures
•Key Figures - By Region (NUTSII)
•General Statistical Data - By Statistical Themes

This Service allows the user to search on a set of key indicators for various levels of geographic breakdown (NUTS I, II, III and Concelho).

The Virtual Library of Official Statistics offers two main facilities: the Virtual Archive and the Bibliographic Catalogue. The first enables a full access to statistical publications issued by Statistics Portugal(INE) from 1864 to 2000. The latter provides the identification of all statistical publications existing in the Institute and published by national and international institutions and foreign organisations.

Statistics Portugal is editing twice a year, since 2003, a Statistical Journal - REVSTAT - which aim is to publish articles of high scientific content, in English, developing innovative statistical scientific methods and introducing original research, grounded in substantive problems. The REVSTAT covers all branches of Probability and Statistics. Studies on important areas of investigation in these domains are also welcome.
REVSTAT replaces former Revista de Estatística.

Searchable Nomenclatures Database

•The Price List sets the prices of INE's products and services.

Products and Services on Line Catalogue

In our regional services' public libraries, it is possible to consult for free all publications as well as those from other entities producing statistical data. There, you can copy the published information (0,10 Euros/page, with a 50% discount for teachers and students).

(Payable services) - At the central statistical office and at the regional delegations, Statistics Portugal has Data Sale Services that sell all its publications; they can also satisfy specific information needs and provide more detailed data than the published information. Information is available on paper or electronically.

Statistics Portugal has been signing protocols with a vast number of public libraries, particularly municipal libraries, in order to endow these libraries with the Institute's most recent publications.

Statistics Portugal Information Network in Higher Education Institutions Libraries.

From now on the general public and students, professors and researchers, in particular, can have statistical information at higher education institutions libraries, situated in every Districts of the country. The Statistical Information Access Points have a number of free-of-charge resources, including: – Publications available in paper and CD-ROM; - Statistical information available through the INE Website; BDEO – The Official Statistics Digital Library; Statistics Portugal Press Releases and other services provided by the Institute.

This service aims mainly to provide those responsible for Statistical Information and Third Declarants with the necessary information to prepare and deliver Intrastat Forms, as well as other agents concerned with collecting procedures and Intra EU Trade Statistics.


Communication Unit
Maria Manuela Martins
Av. António José de Almeida
1000-043 LISBOA
Direct: + 351 218 426 110 General: + 351 218 426 100 (ext:1445/1226)
Fax: + 351 218 426 356/73

Av. António José de Almeida
1000-043 LISBOA
Tel.: 808 201 808 (national network) *
+ 351 226 050 748 (other networks) *
Fax: + 351 218 426 364

* Call service: working days: 9 am - 6 pm
Libraries: Opening hours (Mon-Fri)
Head Office: 9am - 17pm
Regional Services: 9am - 13pm / 14pm-17pm

Regional Offices
- E-mail:
- E-mail:
- E-mail:
- E-mail:

Autonomous Regions

- E-mail:

Açores/Angra do Heroísmo
- E-mail:
Languages of main publications
Portuguese and English.
How are data disseminated (Paper, CD Rom, Website, online databases, databanks)?
All possible formats.
Availability of microdata for research purposes
There is a protocol for accessing some individual data for research purposes.

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