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OECD Competition Assessment Reviews: Portugal

Volume I - Inland and Maritime Transports and Ports

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Portugal’s services markets remain among the most heavily regulated in the OECD. Inland and maritime transports in Portugal are a vital part of the business environment, ensuring the movement of goods and passengers and inputs for the business sector. Regulatory restrictions limit the ability of firms to effectively compete in the markets, whether as providers or customers, while hampering innovation, efficiency and productivity. Against this backdrop, this report analyses Portuguese regulations for road, railway and maritime transport, and many ancillary services (such as vehicle inspection centres), as well as Portugal’s ports. The report examines 1 064 pieces of legislation and makes 417 individual recommendations for amending or removing restrictive provisions to improve competition, and makes a detailed inventory of the analysis underlying the work. Analysis of Portuguese legislation was complemented by research into international experiences and wide consultations with public and private sector stakeholders. The OECD recommendations aim to remove or modify the provisions to benefit businesses and consumers alike. This report identifies the sources of those benefits and gives estimates of their impact. Provided all recommendations are fully implemented, the benefit to the economy from lifting the barriers in the land and maritime transport sectors is estimated to be around EUR 250 million a year.

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Foreword

Portugal has been recovering steadily since 2014 after enduring one of the deepest recessions in the European Union. The economy is now on a positive growth path, with past structural reforms, more favourable global economic conditions, strong export performances and growing domestic demand all contributing to the upswing. After receding in the five years following the 2008 crisis, employment growth has turned positive and wage growth is picking up.

English

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