Portugal. Perhaps the most important event of the year
was not political, it was sporting: July 10 won the
Portuguese national team for the first time European
football men's soccer, and the day after, tens of thousands
of fans celebrated the team, with Cristiano Ronaldo in the
lead, on his return to Lisbon.
countryaah, the January presidential election was won by 67-year-old
lawyer Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa with about 53% of the vote.
Independent left candidate Antonio Sampaio came in second
place in the election but with just 22% of the vote. The
presidential post in Portugal is of a ceremonial nature, but
it is after all the president who appoints the prime
minister and who can also dissolve parliament in a crisis.
During the year, the European Commission put pressure on
Portugal's new left government to lower its budget deficit
and growth forecasts. This is so that the country's state
budget will fall within the EU regulations. It was later
announced that both Portugal and Spain do not have to pay EU
fines for their high budget deficits. However, Portugal must
be able to reduce its budget deficit to 2.5% already during
Prime Minister António Costa announced in February
Sweden, Italy, Austria and Greece that Portugal would like
to receive an additional 5,000 migrants, in addition to the
4,500 allocated under the quota system. The country has a
low birth rate, and in the last four years, half a million
people have left the country, which is therefore in great
need of labor, including agriculture. In August, Prime
Minister Costa Sweden visited and discussed the refugee
issue with Prime Minister Stefan Löfven.
In August and September, fierce forest fires raged around
Portugal; Thousands of firefighters and military were called
in for the extinguishing work, which was made difficult by
In October, Portugal's former Prime Minister António
Guterres was appointed UN Secretary General following the
departure of Ban Ki Moon.
The crisis-ridden Portuguese major bank Banco Comercial
Português (BCP) was rescued from bankruptcy in November when
Chinese conglomerate Fosun bought a 16.7% stake for the
equivalent of SEK 1.7 billion. In May, it was announced that
the country's largest bank Caixa Geral de Depósitos (CGD)
was also on the verge of bankruptcy and is in need of a
capital increase of the equivalent of close to SEK 40
billion, which is 2.5% of Portugal's GDP.