Hungarian President Katalin Novak visits Portugal
Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa (R) and Hungarian President Katalin Novak (L) attend a press conference after their meeting at Belem Palace in Lisbon, Portugal, 23 February 2023. EPA/RODRIGO ANTUNES

President laments Portugal’s statistics on ageing

President Marcelo has received the latest statistics on ageing in Europe – showing Portugal to be the second ‘oldest’ country, behind Italy – with a degree of angst, admitting they are penalising the country where the average age these days has dropped to 46.8. “This is not only a Portuguese problem, it is not only a problem of Western Europe or Central Europe” and it is already “a concern in Eastern Europe”. He stressed that demographic issues are key to addressing the future of Europe. “Do we want a Europe that is a Europe of peace, in respect of international law, and therefore a just peace? Do we want a Europe that recovers economically, do we want a Europe that is socially just, that gives opportunities to the youngest?” This all has to do with demography, he said, coincidentally in the company of the youngest European president “by far”, his “dear friend” Katalin Novák, president of Hungary, on an official visit to Portugal today.