Protest Passos Coelho Photos by Sara Alves - Open Media Group (2).JPG

Portugal’s foreign population decreases by 1.9% in 2011

The number of immigrants in Portugal fell to 436,822 at the end of 2011, according to a report by the Border and Immigration Service (RIFA).

Their report indicated that the country’s foreign population decreased by 1.9% last year, in comparison to 2010.

RIFA points out that the Brazilian population in Portugal is the largest foreign community, representing 111,445 residents, despite 7,918 of those leaving the country during last year.

Ukrainians remain the second largest foreign community (48,022 residents), followed by Cape Verdeans (43,920 residents), Romanians (39,312 residents) and citizens from Guinea-Bissau (18,487).

Last year, border control  authorities refused entry to 1,797 people, a decrease of 13% on 2010, to travellers mainly from Brazil, Angola, Senegal, Venezuela and Paraguay.

The majority of illegal immigrants living in Portugal are noted to be Brazilians and 6,646 illegal immigrants were last year asked to leave the country, while a further 2,486 were expelled.

In addition, 438 cases of document fraud and marriages of convenience were investigated in 2011.