LISBON, April 29 (Xinhua) -- A Portuguese senior official said here on Monday that the February unemployment rate of 6.5 percent "is the lowest in the last 17 years."
According to data from the National Institute of Statistics (INE), in February this year, the unemployment rate stood at 6.5 percent, 0.1 percentage point lower than the previous month, and a decrease of 1.1 percentage points compared to the same period of last year.
"This is another manifestation of the sustained positive evolution that the labour market has been going," Secretary of State for Employment Miguel Cabrita told reporters on the sidelines of a conference in Lisbon.
"There are still positive prospects for the evolution of the labour market," he said, highlighting the "good signs" of the economic climate index and consumer confidence indicators.
Portugal has turned the page on its 2010-2013 crisis and is now enjoying a job-rich economic recovery, driven by investment and exports, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in its report last September.
Portugal's real GDP growth reached 2.7 percent in 2017, the highest rate since 2000, IMF said, noting that with reenergized investment, robust exports, and stable consumption, this recovery has supported a rebalancing of the economy.