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Portugal

  • Portugal saw a spike in its death rate this winter, mostly among the elderly. The government blames the rise on a nasty flu strain. But critics say austerity measures are at least partly to blame, the result of higher medical fees and transportation costs.
  • Just 28 percent of Portuguese over age 30 have graduated from high school, making Portugal not only Western Europe's poorest country but also its least educated. The EU bailed out Portugal last year, but the low level of graduates complicates efforts to build a modern economy.
  • Portuguese Seeking Opportunities In Former Colonies
    Like Greece, Portugal is sinking under the weight of debt, and unemployment is soaring. Unlike Greece, Portugal has former colonies rich in natural resources and in need of labor. Now, Portuguese workers are seeking visas to places such as Angola, a country rich with oil and diamonds.
  • The eurozone crisis has focused attention on debt-burdened Greece. Meanwhile, Portugal is seen as the international creditors' poster-child for obediently slashing spending and welfare benefits. But Portugal's national debt continues to grow, and it's mired in recession and unemployment.

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