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|Subdivisions|| Municipality |
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politics and government of
The Districts of Portugal (Portuguese : Distritos de Portugal), are the most important first-level administrative subdivisions of continental Portugal. Currently, mainland Portugal is divided into 18 districts. The Portuguese Autonomous Regions of Açores and Madeira are no longer divided into districts.
As an administrative division, each district served mainly as the area of jurisdiction of a civil governor, who acted as the local delegate of the Central Government of Portugal.
The Portuguese Constitution of 1976 specifies that Portugal has only, as first level divisions, the autonomous regions (Azores and Madeira) and the administrative regions (to be created in mainland Portugal). According to the Constitution, the districts shall be disestablished in the territories where an autonomous or administrative region has been created.
So, the districts were abolished in Azores and Madeira when these autonomous regions were created, in 1976. In 1998, a proposal was submitted to referendum to create eight administrative regions in mainland Portugal, and, therefore, to extinguish the districts. This proposal was rejected in the ballot and so the districts continued to exist in mainland Portugal. It is worth noting that, despite their abolition in the autonomous regions, the areas of the three former districts of Azores are still used as areas of jurisdiction of some Government and non-government entities, like the district finance directorates (Tax Authority regional offices) or the district football championships.
However, the importance of the districts has been decreasing. In recent years, some administrative, financial and political competencies have been delivered to the CCDR's (Comissão de Coordenação e Desenvolvimento Regional, English:Commission for Regional Coordination and Development) and to the municipalities, to the detriment of the districts. In 2003, the Portuguese municipalities were allowed to organize themselves into intermunicipal communities (comunidades intermunicipais) and metropolitan areas (áreas metropolitanas), which allowed for a lessening in the importance of the districts.
Besides, the abolition of the districts is a subject that came back for discussion in Portuguese society. In 2009, during the campaign for the legislative election of 2009, the leader of the Socialist Party, José Sócrates, promised a new referendum to the administrative regionsand therefore, the abolition of districts, if he won the election. Other personalities support the creation of administrative regions and therefore the abolition of districts.
Nowadays, despite being in the process of being phased out due to the decentralisation policies of the government, the districts still remain the most relevant subdivision in the country, serving as a basis for a series of administrative divisions such as electoral constituencies, police and civil protection regional commands, sports district associations and championships.
On September 8, 2011, a decree from the Portuguese Government de facto extinguished all the offices of civil governor, transferring most of their functions to other bodies. As the existence of the civil governors is still included in the Portuguese Constitution, its de jure extinction can only be done after a constitutional amendment.
In mainland Portugal, for administrative purposes, the districts are still used as the areas of jurisdiction of the local branches and field offices of several Government ministries and agencies. Some of the bodies that have each district as their jurisdiction area are:
For non-Government purposes, the districts are used as the area of jurisdiction of many entities, including:
|District||Population||Municipalities||Parishes||Province of 1936||Region|
|Aveiro||Beira Litoral Province + Douro Litoral Province||Norte, Centro|
|Bragança||Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro Province||Norte|
|Castelo Branco||Beira Baixa Province||Centro|
|Coimbra||Beira Baixa Province, Beira Litoral||Centro|
|Guarda||Beira Alta Province (partly Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro)||Centro (partly Norte, only Vila Nova de Foz Côa)|
|Leiria||Beira Litoral Province, Estremadura||Centro|
|Lisbon||Estremadura (partly Ribatejo)||Lisbon (partly Alentejo)|
|Portalegre||Alto Alentejo Province (partly Ribatejo)||Alentejo|
|Porto||Douro Litoral Province||Norte|
|Santarém||Ribatejo Province (partly Beira Baixa and Beira Litoral)||Centro, Alentejo|
|Setúbal||Estremadura Province, Baixo Alentejo Province||Lisbon, Alentejo|
|Viana do Castelo||Minho||Norte|
|Vila Real||Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro||Norte|
|Viseu||Beira Alta, (partly Douro Litoral)||Centro, Norte|
Following the model of European Portugal, the major Portuguese overseas territories (Angola, Mozambique and Portuguese India) were also divided in districts. In these territories, each district was headed by a district governor, subordinated to the governor-general. In Angola and Mozambique, the former district areas mostly coincide with the modern province areas. In the former Portuguese India, the Damão and Diu districts are still divisions of the present union territory of Daman and Diu, while the present state of Goa (former Goa District) is now divided into two districts.
The municipality is the second-level administrative subdivision of Portugal, as defined by the 1976 Constitution.
Administratively, Portugal is de jure unitary and decentralized state. Nonetheless, operationally, it is a highly centralized system with administrative divisions organized into three tiers. The State is organized under the principles of subsidiarity, local government autonomy, and democratic decentralization of the public service.
Daman and Diu was a union territory in western India. With an area of 112 km2 (43 sq mi), it was the smallest federal division of India on the mainland. The territory comprised two distinct regions—Daman and Diu—that are geographically separated by the Gulf of Khambhat. The state of Gujarat and the Arabian Sea bordered the territory. A Portuguese colony since the 1500s, the territories were annexed by India in 1961. Daman and Diu were administered as part of the union territory of Goa, Daman and Diu between 1961 and 1987, when they became a separate union territory. In 2019, legislation was passed to merge the union territory of Daman and Diu with its neighbouring union territory, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, to form the new union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu with effect from 26 January 2020.
Continental Portugal or mainland Portugal comprises the bulk of the Portuguese Republic, namely that part on the Iberian Peninsula and so in Continental Europe, having approximately 95% of the total population and 96.6% of the country's land. Mainland Portugal is therefore commonly called by residents of the archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira Portuguese: o continente – the continent in all respects including minor elements of combined governance from Lisbon, the country's capital. Before 1975, when the Portuguese territory also stretched to several now-independent states in Africa, the designation metropolis was also used.
The administrative divisions of India are subnational administrative units of India; they compose a nested hierarchy of country subdivisions.
The two Autonomous Regions of Portugal are the Azores and Madeira. Together with Continental Portugal, they form the whole of the Portuguese Republic.
Diu district is one of the three districts of the union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu of India. The district is made up of Diu Island and two small enclaves on the Indian mainland. The district headquarters are at Diu Town. It is the ninth least populous district in the country.
The District of Ponta Delgada was a district of the Ilhas Adjacentes, consisting of the dependent eastern islands of the Azores, located in the Atlantic Ocean. The district of Ponta Delgada, not to be confused with the modern municipality of Ponta Delgada, existed from 1835 until 1976 when it was abolished in the favour of the autonomy charter of the 1975 Portuguese Constitution.
A captaincy is a historical administrative division of the former Spanish and Portuguese colonial empires. It was instituted as a method of organization, directly associated with the home-rule administrations of medieval feudal governments in which the monarch delimited territories for colonization that were administered by men of confidence.
The District of Horta was a district of the Ilhas Adjacentes, consisting of the dependent western islands of the Azores, located in the Atlantic Ocean. The district of Horta, not to be confused with the modern municipality of Horta, existed from 1836 until 1976 when it was abolished in favour of the autonomy charter of the 1975 Portuguese Constitution.
This article is a comprehensive list of all the actual possessions of the Portuguese Empire.
The Roman Catholic Metropolitan Archdiocese of Goa and Daman encompasses the state of Goa and the Union Territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu in India. The ecclesiastical province of Goa and Daman includes a suffragan diocese, Sindhudurg. The Archbishop of Goa also holds the titles of Primate of the East and Patriarch of the East Indies. The diocese is under the Roman Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.
The political status of the Azores is defined by the Political-Administrative Statute of the Autonomous Region of the Azores, which acts as the standard legal constitutional framework for the autonomy of the Portuguese archipelago of the Azores. It defines the scope of the autonomous regional government and the structure and functioning of the region's organs of government within the framework of the 1976 Constitution of Portugal. The autonomous region of Madeira has a similar status.
Healthcare in Portugal is provided through three coexisting systems: the National Health Service, special social health insurance schemes for certain professions and voluntary private health insurance. The SNS provides universal coverage, although in 2012 measures were implemented to ensure the sustainability of the service by the introduction of user fees to be paid for at the end of treatments. In addition, about 25% of the population is covered by the health subsystems, 10% by private insurance schemes and another 7% by mutual funds. The Ministry of Health is responsible for developing health policy as well as managing the SNS. The Health Regulatory Entity (ERS) is the public independent entity responsible for the regulation of the activity of all the public, private and social healthcare providers. In 2019 the government proposes to scrap all fees, which constitute about 2 percent of the NHS's budget, apart from some hospital emergencies.
The Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics (NUTS) is developed by Eurostat, and employed in Portugal for statistical purposes. The NUTS branch extends from NUTS1, NUTS2 and NUTS3 regions, with the complementary LAU sub-categorization being used to differentiate the local areas, of trans-national importance.
The term "provinces" has been used throughout history to identify regions of continental Portugal. Current legal subdivisions of Portugal do not coincide with the provinces, but several provinces, in their 19th- and 20th-century versions, still correspond to culturally relevant, strongly self-identifying categories. They include:
The Regional Junta of the Azores was the governing body created under Decree-Law 458-B/75, to substitute the Civil Governors of the autonomous districts of Ponta Delgada, Angra do Heroísmo and Horta and their individual General Juntas. The Regional Junta was initially proposed by the Group of 11 (Portuguese: Grupo dos Onze, presided by the Civil Governor of the autonomous district of Ponta Delgada, António Borges Coutinho, in January 1975. Ironically, its creation was attributed to the events on 6 June 1975. The Regional Junta of the Azores governed for little more than a year, between 22 August 1975 and 8 September 1976.
The District of Angra do Heroísmo, was a district of the Ilhas Adjacentes, consisting of the dependent central islands of the Azores. The district of Angra, not to be confused with the modern municipality of Angra do Heroísmo, existed until 1976 when it was abolished in the favor of the autonomy charter of the 1976 Portuguese Constitution.
The present Portuguese order of precedence is defined by the Law of the Precedences of Protocol of the Portuguese State of 25th August 2006. This defines the following precedence: