The revival of agriculture in Portugal

Agriculture was the sector that contributed the most to the creation of jobs between the first and second quarters of 2013, according to Economy Minister António Pires de Lima.

“Agriculture has recovered its competitiveness, with a renewed and appealing reputation for younger people,” Pires de Lima said during the 34th Agriculture Fair in Penafiel.

He revealed that 45,000 out of the total 70,000 jobs created during that period were in the agriculture and food industries and described the former sector’s contribution as “extremely important”.

The economy minister highlighted the 6% increase in exports in 2012, a tendency which he considers to be accelerating in 2013, justified by a 8.3% growth so far, and added that agriculture now accounts for 10% of Portugal’s exports.

Pires de Lima also stated that agriculture was responsible for 5% of the companies launched during the last 12 months.

“In the first half of the year, 1,017 new companies were created, which represents a 30% boost compared to the previous year,” he said.

In conclusion, he considered agriculture to be going through a period of “revival”.