Portugal: census finds 5% of population illiterate

Rates halved in 10 years but still highest in Europe

26 November, 17:52

A view of Lisbon A view of Lisbon

(ANSAmed) - LISBON - Over half a million Portugese, or 5% of the population are illiterate according to a census. The National Institute of Statistics released the data, noting that although the rate has halved over the past 10 years it is still the highest in Europe. ß But the results reflect steady progress with regard to qualifications. 15% of over 23 year olds graduated high school versus 9% ten years ago. And the number of children attending obligatory school rose by 12%. Lisbon and the Algarve hold the highest levels of schooling at 60.4% and 52.7% respectively.

Meanwhile the number of immigrants has risen 70% for an overall population swell of 2%. 28% came from Brazil; 10% from Cape Verde, and 9% from the Ukraine. Women outnumber men 5,515,578 to 5,046,600. And while the amount of families has risen from 365,000 to 404,000, nuclear families have dipped 2.8% to 2.6%.

Changing family patterns have led to a 36% upsurge in single parents. Also according to the data the average age in Portugal has risen from 39 to 42, reflecting an increasingly aged society.

The number of over 70's has gone up 26%. (ANSAmed).

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