The Foreign Office reported that it received 32,349 applications for Portuguese nationality in 2014, representing an increase of 7.4% compared with 2013. Of 20,521 requests 20,115 were accepted. 65% of requests were made for naturalization and 18% based on marriage.
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Portugal lost 5% of its population in 2015, compared to the 2014. The country accounts for 2.5% of EU inhabitants. According to Eurostat, the decline is contrary to the EU trends, where the overall EU population grew by an average by 0.26% in 2014.
Unregulated key aspects of issuing “Golden Visas” have led to the suspension of the programme, retroactive to 01 July. As of the end of April, 350 Golden Visas have been issued so far this year. However, requests still come in, creating a growing backlog. The current suspension only makes matters worse, leading to friction between SEF and centrist government officials.
In 2015, you may apply for exemption from “IMI” (Property Rates) if you purchase a property (whether a villa or an apartment) as a permanent residence, provided that the rateable value (“VPT”) of the property does not exceed €125,000. In addition, it is necessary that the household has a total income tax base for personal income tax purposes (IRS) of less than €153,300. If taxpayers meet these criteria, they will qualify for an exemption for a period of three years.
Electricity in Portugal is the second most expensive in the EU. The price of domestic gas is the highest. The amount paid per kilowatt hour, when adjusted for purchasing power, is €0.274, higher than the EU average of €0.208, and surpassed only by Germany (€0.282).