Over the last decade, from 2013 to 2022, Portuguese have always recorded a higher number of hours worked per week than the Spanish. However when looking at productivity indicators, the neighbouring economy is above Portugal, according to data released by the National Statistics Institute (INE) and reported by ECO.

According to this data, the average weekly hours was 41.3 hours in Portugal, while in Spain it was 40.4, in 2022. The differences between the average number of hours usually worked per week full-time reached exceed one hour, and they varied between 0.8 hours (2016 and 2018) and 1.1 hours (2014, 2019 and 2021), notes the statistics office.


Despite working longer, productivity indicators are higher in Spain. The difference is greater when looking at productivity measured by GDP in relation to employment, that is, nominal labour productivity per person: Spain is close to the Community average while Portugal is below 70% of the European Union average.

Productivity, measured by the relationship between GDP per capita and hours worked, presents a smaller gap, but Spain is still ahead. While productivity per hour worked is above 90% of the EU average in Spain, Portugal is almost 30 points below the EU average.

In this sense, GDP per capita in Spain was always higher than in Portugal between 2013 and 2022, “with differences that ranged between 12 PPS and 16 PPS until 2019”, indicates INE.

It should be noted, however, that the scenario changes if we look at the number of hours worked part-time. “In 2022, the number of hours worked part-time in Portugal and Spain was lower than the European Union average, for both sexes”, according to INE, and “Portugal was the country with the lowest value for women".