Women disadvantaged at work

PORTUGAL is one of the EU countries where more women go out to work but on average earn less than men. According to the Instituto Nacional de Estatística (INE), the national statistics institute, women in Portugal are also more vulnerable to unemployment.The data reveals that, in 2003, when the EU had only 15 members, the percentage of working women in Portugal aged between 15 and 64 years old amounted to 65.6 per cent, four points above the EU average.In contrast, Portuguese men closely matched the EU average of 78.8 per cent at 78.5 per cent. Despite more women entering the work market, they continue to occupy lower positions than men, earn less and are more likely to become unemployed. According to the INE, quoting figures collected by EUROSTAT in 2003, the difference between the gross salaries of women, when compared to those of men, was nine per cent. Meanwhile, the percentage of unemployed women was 7.6 per cent, while the percentage of unemployed men was 5.8 per cent.