Yes. I'm guessing it's further east than OTL due to the fall of Moscow disrupting the Soviets?
That is what I though but wanted to make sure. Yes there is a difference in the Iron curtain with Soviets not advancing as far west iOTL. We will have the whole section of the WWII, which will provide a picture of the extent that Germany was able to expand east and the Soviet counter act. The end of the war in Europe was one that caused major distrust between Soviets and West (more than iOTL) leading to another major conflict in Europe at end of the 1948 called the "Iron Curtain Crises". Sorry but at this time cant divulge the exact borders, we will discuss at end of the 1940s - War years section.

Note: Updated the information on post 120 with additional information.
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1940s - The War Years (1940 - 1945) - Portuguese Armed Forces


1940 – 1949 (cont.)
The War Years 1940 – 1945 (cont.)

Portuguese Armed Forces

The security of country became top priority for the government following the fall of France in 1940 which brought German forces to the Spanish border along the Pyrenees Mountains, thus increasing the risk of German invasion of the Iberian Peninsula. The Allies also had their plans to keep the Portuguese out of Axis camp. With the threat of Axis and Allied invasion of Metropolitan and Ultramar provinces real the Portuguese relied primarily on diplomacy to maintain the country neutral for most of the war. While the Portuguese relied of deception and diplomacy to keep both sides out of the country it desperately tried to build up its forces. Limiting the military buildup was lack of vehicles, personnel and infrastructure.

The very limited motor vehicle capabilities which in 1940 was producing limited number of trucks, and other motor vehicles for the Portuguese market was not capable of supplying the Portuguese military with the motor vehicles it needed to modernize. In addition, Portuguese industry had no ability to produce armored vehicles. The garment industry did receive orders for uniforms but like the rest of the Portuguese economy it was operating at capacity and it was estimated it would take one to two years to meet the new civilian and military orders. This left the Portuguese government to rely on diplomacy with both the Axis and Allies to gain what vehicles and military hardware it needed.

In regard to military personnel, due to the economic growth occurring in Metropolitan Portugal, the Portuguese Military (army and navy) had problems recruiting enough men to fill the expanded forces. Therefore in 1940 with the armed forces in dire need of new recruits the Portuguese military integrated all colonial soldiers with regular Portuguese armed forces and opened all military positions to Africans, Indians and Asians including officer ranks. This caused increased mistrust and rift with other right wing European governments including Spain, Italy and Germany but allowed the military to meet its recruitment goals.

New Military and naval bases were planned, and orders given to build them, but like all construction in the country it took over one year to finish the construction of the new bases and over three years for some of the port facilities to be completed.

Army and Naval Organization
In 1940, following the fall of France the Portuguese Army organization was increased to better protect Portuguese Territory from both Allied and Axis threats. The Metropolitan Army was increased to as follows:
  • 25 border battalions (size increased to 1,000) with emphasis on defense (12 in the Iberian Peninsula, 9 in Azores and 4 in Madeira);[1]
  • 3 armored brigades;
  • 3 territorial divisions each with 4 infantry regiments and 1 armored regiment;[2]
The Ultramar Army was also increased due to threats by South Africa as well as Portugal’s desire to provide adequate protection to the growing industrial, resource development and Portuguese population in Africa. It comprised of:
  • 15 border and costal battalions (1 in Cape Verde, 1 in S Tome, 5 in Angola, 5 in Mozambique, 1 in Portuguese India, 2 in Timor);
  • 2 infantry Divisions (1 in Angola and 1 in Mozambique);
  • 1 Infantry Regiment in Guinea;
In 1940, the 1930s Naval rebuilding project was coming to completion and the Portuguese Navy received the last of its ordered naval ships and comprised of the following ships:[3]
  • 12 Destroyers (7 Vouga/Douro class, 5 Cabral class);
  • 2 Light cruisers (Diogo de Silves class);
  • 1 Sea Plane Carrier;[4]
  • 12 frigates (8 Alfonso de Albuquerque class, 2 Goncalo Velho class and 2 Pedro Nunes class);
  • 5 submarines (2 U-boats Type VII-B and 3 Delfim class);
  • 3 Torpedo Boats;
  • 5 gunships;
  • 2 river gunboats;
  • 12 patrol boats;
  • 2 mine warfare vessels;
  • Naval Support Ships (4 survey vessels, 2 support vessels, 3 troop transport ships and 2 training ships);
The Navy was divided into three groups:
  • Metropolitan Navy (7 Destroyers, 2 Submarines, 5 patrol boats, 2 mine warfare ships and support ships);
  • Ultramar Navy (12 Frigates, 2 Torpedo Boats, 7 patrol boats, 2 river gunboats, 1 troop transport);
  • Portuguese Rapid Response Force (5 Destroyers, 2 light cruisers, 1 Sea Plane Carrier, 3 submarines, 2 troop transport and support ships);
Army and Naval Expansion
During the war the Portuguese armed forces were in desperate need of equipment and did not care where it came from. Following the resumption of Portuguese exports to Germany at end of 1940 the Germans began having problems paying for some of the exports after using up its foreign currency reserves, maxing out its credit and running low on gold so it found the one thing the Portuguese were willing to purchase military hardware. While the German military was in desperate need of more equipment, Germany was in greater need of Portuguese oil and strategic war materials. These purchases were not kept a secret from the Allies and Portuguese position to the British and starting in 1942 the US was that the sale of the hardware to the Portuguese preventing it from being used against the Allies.

From 1941 to 1942 the Portuguese army received enough military equipment to create the Alentejo Mechanized Division. In 1941, they received 14 Panzer IV E, and 6 Panzer IV F tanks, in 1942 they received 36 Panzer IV F and 24 Panzer G. Over the two years they also received 250 Sd.Kfz 250 and 251 half-tracks. In 1942, they received 30 17cm Kanone, 18 artillery guns and as part of the purchase Portugal also received 140 spare Maybach 120 engines for the Panzers and 600 Maybach 42 engines for the Sd.Kfzs. The Portuguese army air unit also received 100 Junkers 211F - 1300hp engines that were used to upgrade the BF-109 and HE-111 and the Portuguese army also received radios and miscellaneous German military hardware. In 1942 as part of the last military hardware supplied by Germany the Portuguese armed forces received 1575 MG42 as well as two Freya and one Wurzburg radars.[5] At the end of 1941 and into 1942 the Portuguese Navy received 4 more U-boats Type VII-B (retrofitted) as the German U-boat fleet was upgraded and the VII-B became obsolete.[6]

At same time that Portugal was getting military hardware from Germany it was also receiving military hardware from UK as part of the “Portugal - Great Britain 1940 Accord”. With Britain’s limited ability to spare military equipment for Portugal the biggest contribution to the Portuguese military upgrade and buildout was in technology transfers but it also provided Portugal with some military equipment. In 1941 the UK sold some Anti-aircraft guns (AF 3.7 & Bofors 40mm), a squadron of Bristol Blenheim torpedo bombers and engines and guns to arm the new frigates / destroyers being built by the Portuguese.[7] [8]

The entry of the US in the war greatly increased the availability of war materials and in 1944 as part of Portugal’s entry in the war negotiations with the Allies the Portuguese Armed Forces received some much-needed military hardware:
  • 4 brand new Fletcher class destroyers;
  • Bofors 40mm Anti-aircraft guns;
  • 12 VLR B-24 (Half of the B-24s were moved to the Lajes base in Azores and the remaining six to the Beja base, to be used in anti-U-boat operations);[9]
  • Equipment to create and operate one mechanized division (converting the Beira infantry Division to mechanized);
  • 100 Ordnance QF 17-pounder plus 300 trucks (for the other two infantry divisions on the Iberian Peninsula;
  • 20 BL 9.2-inch gun Mk IX for coastal defenses;
  • The current 5 Cabral class destroyers also received comprehensive upgrades, replacing the 50 (12.7mm) with 40mm Bofors, one of the torpedo launchers with a hedgehog, and new radar, control and sonar systems;
Following Operation Dragoon Portugal received 20 LST ships from the US.

National Arms Industrial Development
Starting in 1940, both FBP and FMBP increased production of arms and munitions. In 1941 the Portuguese began manufacturing artillery and mortar shells for the British. FBP became responsible for the production of all munitions including artillery shells, mortars and grenades. By 1939 when access to foreign military weapons and munitions stopped due to war breaking out the country had become self-sufficient in all munitions. FBP ammunition section was separated into two production lines, one for artillery and another for mortars.

FMBP continued to manufacture the Mauser 98k, 8 cm Granatwerfer 34 mortar and M1940 helmet for the Portuguese military. At same time it continued to manufacture Mauser-Vergueiro rifles for South America. In 1942, the Portuguese developed the FBP submachine gun and by 1943 began producing them for the military. By 1943 both FMBP and FBP were operating 24/7 with three shifts a day. In 1941 both FMBP and FBP became involved in the transfer tech of German military technology to Portugal. FMBP became involved in the design and manufacture of guns for the Panzer tanks, various vehicles and armored vehicles as well as planes.

In 1940, the Portuguese military as part of its re-armament decided against expanding the Military Uniform Company and instead provided contracts to several of the country’s major garment and shoe manufactures for uniforms and boots for both the army and navy allowing it to closed its outdated Military Uniform Company.

In 1940 pans were made to expand Arsenal do Alfeite and LISNAVE drydocks in the Tagus Estuary and the number of Margueira large drydocks were doubled. Meanwhile plans were also made to expand the Viana do Castelo Shipyard and submarine covered docks constructed. By the end of war, Metropolitan Portugal drydocks were employing over 7,500 workers both in the military as well as merchant navy yards.

In 1941 the Portuguese aircraft company “Companhia Aerea Cabral & Coutinho” (CACC) was founded and Mota-Engil setup a military engine division with the express aim of developing and manufacture German military aircraft, the two planes that were chosen was the Junkers Ju 188 and the Focke-Wulf FW 190. CACC received the airplane technology while Mota-Engil received technology to build the twin-row BMW 801 radial engines to power the planes. After several delays the two companies were able to accomplish their objectives and 20 prototypes of each plane were manufactured with BMW801-E (type engines) by 1944. By the time the prototypes were completed, and all test flights were successful the Portuguese were negotiating with the Allies in joining the war on the Allied side. Therefore, the Portuguese government wishing to keep its previous Axis collaboration away from the Allies decided instead to provide both CACC and Mota-Engil with funds to improve both the engine performance and plane design. The prototypes were put into active service in the Indian Ocean theatre.

During the war OGMA continued to grow as it took on the maintenance contracts for the much expanded air force which comprised of Hurricanes MkI, BF-109, HE-111, Bristol Blenheim torpedo bombers and VLR B-24. In addition, it continued to manufacture both the Avro 626 and de Havilland Tiger Moth training aircraft for the pilot training programs. In 1942 it was tasked with the BF-109 and HE-111 upgrades which included upgrading the engines on both types of planes to the recently acquired Junkers 211F - 1300hp engines. Additional maintenance shops were setup in Beira, Panjim and Dili.

In 1941 BRAVIA was founded as a joint venture between Daimler Portugal and Portuguese investors. It received the technology to develop and manufacture Panzer IV and Sd.Kfz 250 and 251 halftracks. Daimler Portugal which had the contract to maintain the Panzer IV and Sd.Kfz halftracks that Portugal had acquired from Germany brought the expertise inhouse to BRAVIA as a way of BRAVIA technicians gaining experience. In late 1943 the first Panzer IV and Sd.Kfz were constructed and tested. But like CACC the Portuguese government held off ordering and instead provided additional funding to improve on both the Maybach engines which had been manufactured by Mota-Engil as well as the tank and halftracks. Meanwhile FMBP which had manufactured the Panzer’s 7.5 cm KwK 40 gun began studying ways to improve its performance. In 1944 FMBP acquired several US 75 mm guns and it began studying them in the hopes it could incorporate it on the Panzers.

Siemens Portugal was renamed EFACEC in 1940 and received several technology transfers and was instrumental in producing most of the electronics used in the Junkers Ju 188 and the Focke-Wulf FW 190, Panzers IV and the Sd.Kfz halftracks. It along with Companhia União Fabril (CUF) electric division were heavily involved in the electric manufacture and development of starters, alternators and other electrical components for the navy also.

União Metalo-Mecânica (UMM) was founded to develop and manufacture military vehicles including trucks, all-terrain vehicles and armored cars. It received technology transfer from several German companies and by early 1944 was producing four different vehicles. The U100 truck was based on the Mercedes-Benz L3000 truck, the UAlter all-terrain vehicle was based on the Volkswagen Kübelwagen, the UCAlter pickup which came in variety of models and was based on the Opel Bliz truck and the Chaimite armored car which was based on the Steyr ADGZ and Daimler "Dingo" armored cars. In 1944 UMM manufacturing plants in Setubal and Coimbra were in full production manufacturing various vehicles for the Portuguese army and security forces and was one of the only newly formed companies openly manufacturing German technology vehicles for the Portuguese market. While “Fábrica de Pneus Fapobol” (FPF) Fapobol Tire Company which was based in Bissau started manufacturing Tires for the UMM vehicles and CACC planes.

[1] The size of the Portuguese Legion (PL) was also increased in both Metropolitan and Ultramar Portugal.

[2] Plans were made to convert one to a mechanized division and add a second new mechanized division, but Portugal lacked both the ability and equipment to accomplish it on its own in 1940.

[3] iOTL from 1933 -1939 Portuguese Navy received a total of 22 new warships. At the outbreak of WWII, the Portuguese Navy comprised of: 6 Destroyers (Vouga-class), 7 Frigates (3 Alfonso de Albuquerque class, 2 Goncalo Velho class and 2 Pedro Nunes class), 3 Submarines (Delfim class), 3 Torpedo Boats, 5 Gunships, 2 River Gunboats, 3 Patrol boats, 2 Mine warfare vessels, 4 Survey vessels, 2 Support vessels, and 2 Training ships. They also had a naval aviation fleet of 40 aircraft, mostly sea planes operating from Lisbon, Aveiro and Macau.

[4] Based on design of the French Sea Plane Carrier “Commandant Teste”

[5] These were older models, obsolete by British standards but the best Portugal could get at time and already well known by the British intelligence so the sale to Portugal was not considered strategic.

[6] These U-boats were in addition to the ones it rebuilt from damaged German U-boats that reached Viana. (see 1940 -1949 Section Politics, War Years Axis and Allies)

[7] iOTL Portugal only started to receive the military hardware in 1942, included in this agreement was the building of several patrol trawlers in Portuguese shipyard for BN.

[8] The British provided engines and guns for the first 10 frigates / destroyers Portugal built for the British Navy but more importantly they provided blueprints and British companies setup satellite factories in Portugal to build the remaining engines and guns.

[9] About half the B-24s were modified to B-24J to operate in ASW role / long range recon. The B-24Js were equipped with deep charges, rockets, Leigh Light and search radar – similar to the modifications made for / by RAF Coastal Command.

The Portuguese during the war made some very strategic decisions to start and sponsor a national arms industry to provide itself with infrastructure to furnish its own security needs. This was done due to the weariness of the Portuguese with both the Axis as well as the Allied. At the start of the war it was the Axis who were the biggest threat and Portugal was able to use its resources to receive much needed military hardware in place of payment. As the Allies grew in strength the Portuguese once again were able to leverage the switch to the Allies by cutting off Nazi Germany from Portuguese resources and in turn receive substancial military hardware from the Allies.

The other factor in the military that is at many times overlooked was the integration of the military. Neither the British nor Americans were integrated with British colonial forces not being used in Europe and the USA had no integrated military units with blacks being relegated to support functions. Here desperation and need for bodies meant that Portuguese military had to dispel with old attitudes in a hurry, this was only possible due to the fear that Portugal had of either Axis and Allied invasion. By wars end hundred of Africans, Asians and Indians men were making their way through the military command structure. It was a long struggle with lots of pitfalls but one that slowly succeeded so much so that almost 1/3 of all officers in Operation Dragon were non-whites and only half the soldiers were white. The biggest benefit was that serving together and depending on your countryman to defend you regardless of race provided a huge boost to the integration of the country. Questions/ Comments?

Return in 2 weeks on March 31 as we post the development of the Portuguese economy during the war.
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Would economic partnership with Brazil be on the Portuguese agenda?
The short answer yes, a more economical powerful Portuguese federation would both benefit Brazil but at same time become a economic and political rival. Now how two equally rivals interact would determine the impact of the economic partnership. If both were to be part of a economic union like EU along with other smaller economies then that partnership has the potential to rival some of the largest economies of world.
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1940s - The War Years (1940 - 1945) - Portuguese Economy


1940 – 1949 (cont.)

The War Years 1940 – 1945 (cont.)


The development of the Portuguese economy did not stop during the war, while at times there were resource limitations the war for most part helped spur economic development of the country both in Metropolitan and Ultramar provinces. The only regions not seeing much development was Macau and Timor due to Japanese occupation and Japanese military threats. The Portuguese government and industry benefited from high demand and increased prices for Portuguese oil, resources and manufactured goods. The Minister of Finance and Minister of Economy directed as much money, resources and personnel available to the completion and operation of the projects that increased the output of those resources and goods. Foremost was completion of critical industry and extraction of resources that could no longer be imported due to war such as the rubber plantations and processing plants that had been started in the 1930s. During the war years the production of rubber in Portuguese Africa tripled and by wars end the country was self-sufficient in rubber production.

Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing
The Minister of Agriculture, Rafael da Silva Neves Duque, led a personal crusade to increase agricultural development both in Europe, Africa and other parts of country. Thousands of subsistent farmers or small holdings were either purchased or expropriated by private enterprises into larger holdings to increase agricultural production. The once exception was the cooperative model that was organized in several parts of country such as Azores where small holders banded together to form large agricultural enterprises.[1] A real effort was made to combat the lack of mechanization as well as lack of transportation with the doubling of the production of tractors, farm equipment and lorries by Portuguese factories by wars end but so great was the need that the issue was only adequately resolved in the late 40s and early 50s as the production increased and tractors and trucks were able to be imported.

The Portuguese government’s self-sustainability mandate provided a guide to the various regions and provinces to increase production of various agriculture products nationally. Foremost was the production of vegetables close to large urban areas due to lack of transportation infrastructure and the cold storage warehouses. To aid this several animal feed companies such as Grupo Valouro began large scale manufacturing plants in both Metropolitan Portugal and overseas provinces. Poultry, eggs, and pork production increased as modern agriculture methods were employed to increase production. At same time the cooperative model thrived alongside it allowing small time producers able to compete with the large producers. Health concerns regarding conservation of meat led government to initiate new food safety regulations including the construction of cold storage warehouses. One of the best examples of the success of the agriculture initiatives was the production of potatoes which by 1944 was able to meet national needs and allowed to be exported.

Agricultural production in Angola also increased; in the north, cassava, coffee, and cotton was grown; in the central highlands, maize was cultivated; and in the south, where rainfall was the lowest, cattle herding was prevalent. In addition, large plantations that produced palm oil, sugarcane, bananas, and sisal expanded or were started. The vast Forests of Angola were also exploited as Portuguese government provided forestry companies with 100-year leases to large tracks of forest. Mahogany timber became the primary wood used for furniture and construction in Portugal.[2]

In Mozambique the production of cotton, cashew nuts, tea, sugar, copra, sisal, rice and coconut were either expanded or started. Large plantations were started by private enterprises or in some cases small agricultural holdings organized in the cooperative framework.

In Guinea production of rice increased yearly along with cattle and cashew, peanut substantially increasing the provinces ability to feed itself and contribute to the country’s development.

The demand for fish grew in all parts of the country and the government assisted in the expansion of the fisheries especially in expanding regions such as Angola and Mozambique. Fishermen and their families were moved from poorer regions of Azores and Madeira to Angola and Mozambique where the demand was growing the fastest. The government also supported the increased production of salt, construction of wooden fishing boats and building of storage facilities to facilitate the growing fishing industry.

In Angola limited phosphate mining was started both in the Cabinda enclave and northern Angola region. The development of these fertilizer resources was hampered by lack of equipment and transportation infrastructure but even so government and industry working together were able to increase production10-fold in both regions by 1945.

Oil / Gas and Mineral
Oil / Gas and Mineral production was overseen by the Ministry of Economy & Industry led by Amilcar Silva. The Minister’s plan was not only to increase existing production of oil, gas and minerals but also to develop new resources or begin the development of new sources of minerals where possible. For the first time the country became self-sufficient in many of the resources it needed such as iron ore, coal, oil and bauxite.

In September 1943 iron ore mining in Angola (mined in the provinces of Malanje, Bié, Huambo, and Huíla) reached 2.5 million tons per year and was transported to the iron ore smelters operating along Angola’s coast in the cities Luanda and Benguela.

By 1941, the huge coal fields of Tete in Mozambique were providing all of Portugal’s coal needs including the huge steel plants and mill as well as the thermal power plants. Production grew and started exceeding Portuguese demand and by wars end approximately 30% of production was exported.

Oil production in Algarve and Angola suffered a 20% drop in 1940 when some of the German technicians were called back to Germany at the outset of WWII.[3] It took SONAP till 1941 for Portuguese production to reach 1939 levels. In 1943 production in Algarve reached 102,000 bpd while Angola reached 15,000 bpd. In 1942, the Sines refinery was expanded and the smaller refinery near Luanda started in 1939 came online in 1942.

Mineral exploration continued into the 1940s while many of the resources discovered in the 30s finally brought online:[4]
  • In Portuguese India: bauxite, manganese, clays, limestone and silica mining were expanded;
  • Geological surveys in Angola also showed that additional minerals such as manganese, phosphates, granite, zinc, wolfram, fluorite, sulfur, feldspar, kaolin, mica, asphalt, gypsum, and talc could also be mined. Mining operations for many of these resources were started such as phosphates which was in great demand for agriculture;
  • Bauxite (primary raw material of aluminum) was mined in Mozambique and Guinea for the growing aluminum industry;
Lack of transportation infrastructure continued to hinder production of raw materials in all of Portugal including Portuguese Africa. Road and rail system in both Iberian Peninsula and Portuguese Africa increased threefold by wars end from 1936 levels. Even then the lack of space on the Portuguese merchant ships meant that resources sat on Portuguese docks for long time.

During the 1930s two Swedish industrial and mining companies: Atlas Copco and Sandvik became heavily involved in Portuguese mining industry and by end of the decade Portuguese market accounted for 25% of their sales. In 1940 both Swedish companies reacted to the war and uncertainty in Europe by combining their Portuguese subsidiaries calling it Atlas-Sand and setting up a manufacturing and assembly plant in the outskirts of Benguela to service mining industry in Portugal and its overseas provinces as well as Belgium Congo.

Industrial Production
The onset of war limited the country’s growth and development as key components such as industrial machinery and transportation vehicles from abroad were no longer available and the government’s primary industrial goals continued to be the expansion of country’s industrial output. Compounding the issues facing the country was the limited size and population of Metropolitan Portugal where 80% of the industrial production was concentrated. The only reason the Ultramar provinces industrial output was so high was due to the building of Iron Ore and Aluminum smelters in Ultramar provinces in the previous decade. As part of the 1940 strategic development plan a decision was made to emphasize the construction of factories as close to the source of the resource in order to reduce the need for transportation infrastructure. The four main Ultramar provinces selected for the establishment of new factories was Angola, Mozambique, Goa and Guinea. During the first of half of the decade hundreds of factories were constructed in the Ultramar provinces. Some industries such as furniture manufacturing which used primarily mahogany wood found in Angola expanded their manufacturing in Angola, while new plants manufacturing manufactured goods and even military hardware were also established in Angola and Mozambique. Portuguese India became the center for clothing industry with clothing manufacturers expanding there as lack of personnel and higher wages limited their expansion in Metropolitan Portugal. Meanwhile Portuguese workers from affected shift in manufacturing were re-employed in other manufacturers.

As part of the various UK – Portugal accords was the authorization of British companies to setup Portuguese subsidiaries and factories to manufacture products in high demand in Portugal and no longer available from Britain due to war. These factories were greatly subsidized by Portuguese government, like the Robert Stephenson and Hawthorns plants built in Portugal to manufacture locomotives, rail rolling stock and rail equipment in 1942. This resulted in the doubling of the production of locomotives along with rail stock allowing rail traffic within Metropolitan Portugal and Ultramar provinces to increase by 20% a year by wars end.

From 1940 to 1941 Portuguese naval shipyards operated at full capacity producing naval trawlers, most of which were sold to the RN, until Germany protested.[5] Portuguese shipyards then switched to building frigates (2nd class) which was only used to patrol Portuguese coast. During the war, the Portuguese merchant marine shipyards also operated at full capacity producing a variety of naval support ships as well as merchant marine ships, even so Portugal continued to suffer marine transportation shortage. During the 1940s, Portuguese shipbuilding capacity was increased as LISNAVE new large ship drydock on the south side of the Tagus Estuary were completed and allowed the Portuguese to start building larger ships, in addition two new shipyards were also finished providing the country with increased shipbuilding and maintenance capacity:
  • In Guinea “Estaleiro de Construção Naval Bissau” (1943);
  • In Goa "Estaleiros Navais de Goa” (1944);
The outbreak of the war meant that both the Allies and Axis restricted exports to Portugal of military hardware as well as spare parts and ammunition.[6] Under the Defense Minister, João Simões, direction the Portuguese military industries expanded immensely. Contracts were provided to produce both spare parts and ammunition.[7]. In 1941 the PFAFF Portuguese sewing machine plan expanded to meet the expanding garment and leather industries.

In 1941 several new companies such as BRAVIA, CACC, EFACEC, Mota-Engil, and UMM were formed and along with existing companies such as Companhia União Fabril formed partnerships with German companies to develop and manufacture German military and electronic products in Portugal.[8]

In 1940 with war ranging throughout Europe the Portuguese car company Edfor faced a major problem as demand for its cars the Grand Sport and Grand Touring was greatly reduced, while some demand continued to exist externally in Britain the number of cars Edfor was able to export was very few due to British restrictions while Portuguese demand also fell. Faced with a drop of over 70% demand for the cars Eduardo Ferreirinha the owner was afraid he would have to shut the factory. Instead he was able to arrange investors and from 1941 – 1943 Edfor designed and began manufacturing two different cars, both four doors luxury sedans the Grand Alba and Grand Marlei while at same time continuing limited production of the Grand Sport and Grand Touring.

In the early part of the 1940s many of the English and German Engineering companies that had dominated the construction and infrastructure industry left or were weakened by the withdrawal of senior management and foreign engineers who were called up to their countries’ national service. It was at this time that several homegrown engineering companies took shape such as Mota-Engil, Soares da Costa SGPS, Dstgroup and Grupo Edifer while existing companies such as Teixeira Duarte and Eusébios & Filhos grew immensely. The Foreign subsidiaries were either bought out or folded as their staff moved over the new national companies who went on to dominate the industry.

Energy and Transportation
Demand for electricity in both in Metropolitan Portugal and Ultramar provinces continued to outpace supply and the government was forces to continue restricting usage and impose price controls in order to make it economical. To meet growing demand several new power sources came online and more were ordered during the decade. In Metropolitan Portugal, the Belver dam on the Tagus River, Bemposta and Miranda dams on the Douro River, the Bouçã, Cabril and Castelo de Bode dams on the Zezere River all came online between 1941 and 1943 as well as 10 coal and gas thermal electric plants. Even so demand for electricity in 1943 continued to outstripped supply by 30%. In 1944, a study commissioned by Luis Barbosa, Minister of Transportation and Communication, found that 30% of all electricity capacity in Metropolitan Portugal was being wasted due to inefficient electricity distribution system. The study provided the impetus for the Portuguese government to create the Portuguese Electric Company “Eletricidade de Portugal” (EDP) as the single electricity distributor in all the Iberian Peninsula. The dams and thermal electric plants continued to be privately owned and EDP negotiated contracts with the owners to supply electricity to it. In 1945, the Portuguese government authorized the construction of seven additional dams[9] while at same time 12 thermal hydro stations were planned.

In Ultramar provinces major Hydro Electric dams also came online or were ordered. In Angola, the Cambande Dam on the Kawanza River, the Gove Dam on the Kunene River and the Lomaum Dam on the Catumbela River came online by 1944. Thermal Electric plants (coal and Oil/Gas) were built close to major cities to furnish the growing energy demand. Government owned electricity distribution companies were also setup in Angola, Mozambique and Guinea. In August 1943, the Saltinho Dam in Guinea as well as the Massingir Dam in Mozambique came online and began providing not only electricity to the cities Bissau and Lourenco Marques respectively but also power to the Portuguese aluminum plants in both cities by September 1943.

In Portuguese Africa all-weather roads and railways were built connecting the growing cities and ports to the resources. The need for roads and railways continued outstripping the capacity and roads and railways were constantly congested. By 1945 the road and rail network had grown five-fold since 1930 but with the strong economic growth witnessed in these Ultramar provinces the transportation situation continued complicated.

In 1942 a rail industry study in Metropolitan Portugal where several small companies operated with little to no cooperation between them recommended the merging of all railway companies in Metropolitan Portugal as single company. In 1943 the Portuguese government forced all rail operators in Metropolitan Portugal to merge into “Companhia Ferroviária Ibérica” (CFI). Resistance by owners and management forced the Minister of Transport, Luis Barbosa, to dismiss many of the management and remove the owners from day to day operation involvement of the new merged railroad company. As a result of the merger and reorganization rail transportation efficiency in Metropolitan Portugal gradually improved.

In 1941 a new domestic rail rolling stock company “Sociedades Reunidas de Fabricações Metálicas,” SOREFAME was founded and during the war was involved in manufacturing railway equipment such as rolling stock, and equipment for hydro-electric reservoirs, such as dam gates.

The size of Portuguese Merchant Marine increased substantially during the war but with growth in trade between Metropolitan Portugal, Ultramar provinces, Britain, British Commonwealth and Latin America meant that it was only able to handle 60% of the cargo needs of the country. Contracts with Argentinean and Brazilian transportation companies helped somewhat but demand continued to grow faster than capacity. To assist with the growing backlog of shipping in Portuguese ports in 1944 as part of the agreement for Portugal to enter war on the Allied side Portugal received 50+ “liberty ships” along with the opening of all civilian ports to Allied ships who handled a greater percentage of shipping between Portugal and Allied ports.

Finance and Commerce
The war increased demand for raw materials, oil/gas and agricultural products resulting in large price increases causing inflation in Portugal to jump. Like other countries the Portuguese government attempted to deal with problem by controlling prices. The Minister of Finance forced companies to freeze prices sometimes having to resort to strong arm tactics.

The wages in Portugal saw a substantial increase over the decade and minimum wage and average wages in Portugal rose due to inflation and high demand for labor. In 1942, Portuguese government stopped wage discrepancy between Europeans and Africans. One set of wages was set and national and regional Corporative groups representing labor, business and government set salary ranges for most industries. One of the biggest impact was the ending of low or non-existing wages paid to thousands of Africans by many plantations and mines.

During war years Portugal implemented strict rationing thus allowing it to export the excess it produced while still maintaining access to the goods for all Portuguese. The increased exports provided both the government and private businesses very high revenues and profits. The Portuguese government used its high revenues to invest in education, social projects and infrastructure. Meanwhile tight monetary control, limited currency movement out of country and corporate tax laws provided incentive for Portuguese companies to expand and invest these profits back in their businesses. Taxes on investment income were also reduced to encourage individuals and companies to invest in the stock market either directly or through mutual funds.

During the war years, construction of home and commercial buildings continued at same rate as the late 1930s but failed to keep up with the increase in demand as internal migrants and refugees continued to flock to the fast-growing cities.

[1] In the Azores, a substantial shift took place during the 30-40s as substantial number of small scale fishermen and farmers were recruited to the growing fishing industry in Africa, meanwhile demand for beef and leather led many landowners to switch to livestock. There was also a great need for dairy products in Portugal so dairy operation became the dominating agricultural practice on the islands. Local government and corporative movements started several dairy cooperatives, meat packing companies as well as leather tanners on the islands.

[2] The 100-year lease stipulated that companies were obligated to return the land in same condition it received. Companies at first ignored the stipulation and harvested trees using clear cutting but government inspections and fines soon forced companies to begin reforestation programs and change harvesting methods.

[3] The majority of workers from Whitershall stayed on in Portugal with their families and began working directly for SONAP.

[4] In 1938, many German industrial and mining leaders with operations in Portugal began “Portugalizing” their operations. This entailed identifying specific management and key personnel required to manage and operate the subsidiary while “cut off” from German parent corporation. Included in the plan was also the complete incorporation of the subsidiary as Portuguese company and the listing of its stock in the Portuguese stock markets. The identified personnel families moved to Portugal as part of the plan. While this was happening the growing tensions between Germany and other countries led many other German employees living in Portugal to bring their families to Portugal on the pretense of vacation, while in Portugal they decided to remain indefinitely. During the summer of 1939 these workers and their families requested residency authorization for themselves and their families. At the outbreak of war these workers like the ones from Whitershall stayed in Portugal rather than return to Germany.

[5] iOTL the Portuguese Naval yards sold 12 trawlers to the RN here the increased capacity meant that they were able to deliver 20 in the same time frame.

[6] The exception being the trade of older German hardware for Portuguese oil, minerals and food (till 1943 when the situation in the Eastern front forced Germans to turn back to many of their older model hardware) and Portuguese Rearmament agreement with UK. Even then British only had limited material it could spare Portugal.

[7] Till 1942 the only country that was in a position to sell war material was US, unfortunately their opinion of Portugal and its nationalistic and conservative government made buying war materials difficult. The US government believed that Portugal was the country most likely to join the Axis, so they blocked several sales including the purchase of 200 trucks from GM in 1940. This led the Portuguese government to distrust the Americans even more.

[8] See 1940-1949 Politics, War Years Axis and Allies & 1940-1949 Portuguese Armed Forces, National Arms Industry Development.

[9] The dams in the Iberian Peninsula were: Agueira Dam on the Mondego River, Alto Rabagão Dam on the Rabagão River, Carapatelo, Crestuma, Picote, Regua and Valeira dams on Douro River.

The Portuguese economy continued its strong expansion driven by both exports to both Allies and Axis (at least till pressured by Allies to stop) as well as domestic demand resulted in some very different outcomes compared to iTOL. iOTL, while the Portuguese did benefit from strong exports to the Allies during the war iTTL its more advanced economy 2-3 times larger provided she country several opportunities not available to Portugal led by Salazar. The development of national brands that would come to dominate the economy in the later decades had their beginning during the war. The withdrawal of American, German and British products led to several Portuguese and emigrants to start their own companies. It was under this strong growth that several far reaching and advanced ideas occurred. One of the most profound changes was the elimination of the discrepancy in wages between Europeans and non-Europeans. The initial reason was the mounting pressure by the Europeans who complained about companies both in Metropolitan Portugal and the Oversea Provinces hiring non-Europeans because their wages was between 20-40% lower. The elimination of the wage discrimination had no real impact on the economy for most companies were begging for staff and trained workers much prized. The huge benefit was the unforeseen social impact in which non-Europeans began losing the stigma of second class citizens in many ways. Which would lead to over the next two decades to a continued integration of all people in the country as "Portuguese". Another major impact to all the development in the country especially in the overseas provinces was an increase in migration of people to and from the overseas provinces. Questions/ Comments?

Return in 2 weeks on April 14 as we post the changes to Portuguese Education & Health during the war.
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I can’t wait till the war ends.
I wanna see the education chapter, and how it is different then when I was in school in portugal, in 2005.
Will we have an epidemic happening? Because of the more travel happening their will be more diseases going to places it has never gone before right?


Portugal is not a small economy.
iOTL they were a small economy but as can be seen by the development and growth the Portuguese are finding their footing the war was a blessing in disguise for it removed the competition from the advanced and large economies. With a renewed economic mentality and commerce supported by the government the Portuguese begin manufacturing many of the products the country needed. Included in them are medical and electronic equipment as well as tool, industrial machinery and even railway and motor vehicles. As we will see in the following posts including Foreign Affairs it would use these new founded industries products to make inroads in South America.


I can’t wait till the war ends.
I wanna see the education chapter, and how it is different then when I was in school in portugal, in 2005.
Will we have an epidemic happening? Because of the more travel happening their will be more diseases going to places it has never gone before right?
Hi there, sorry forgot to answer this question, there were substantial changes to both the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health to deal with many of the issues facing the country. More on that next. As for epidemics no there were not, there were more tropical illness to many newcomers but no different that newcomers arriving in South America or even southern US. Mines and remote camps were the biggest threat but Portuguese government used a page from other previous tropical projects such as building of panama canal. use a lot of insecticides and clear cut a large area around and drain all standing water for 5-10 kilometers. That being said tropical diseases were still a concern and as the nation was desperate for development of these resources and areas significant investment was put to mitigate the threat. Even so death toll and injury. The manufacture of mosquito net was greatly ramped up and made a priority and by 1942 available in sufficient quantity and cheap enough that even natives in remote villages were receiving it as part of the government intervention in all parts of the overseas provinces.

Now for the next update.
1940s - The War Years (1940 - 1945) -Health & Education


1940 – 1949 (cont.)

The War Years 1940 – 1945 (cont.)

Health and Education

Portuguese Youth

1940 Portuguese Youth National Congress poster

The Portuguese Youth (PY) was expanded through the entire country including Ultramar provinces in 1940. While resources were limited during the war years by 1944 the PY was established in every parish in Metropolitan Portugal and every city and town in Ultramar provinces. Starting in 1942 membership was made compulsory for all children between ages of 7 and 14. Membership from 14 – 19 was voluntary for those not attending secondary school, but all youths from 14-19 were still required to complete 90 days of volunteer and civic duty per year. One of the benefits of Portuguese Youth (PY) was free health care as well as health education programs for them to improve the lives of their family members too.

In 1944 Marcelo Caetano was promoted to Minister of Youth & Sport as the Portuguese government recognized the need to mold the character and motivation of Portuguese youth.

In 1940 João de Avelar Maia de Loureiro was promoted to Minister of Health and the Ministry became an independent ministry instead of being under the under the Prime Minister’s office. The department continued working on fixing many of the public health issues affecting the country including: infant mortality, public sanitation and clean drinking water, and access to health services.

Starting in 1941 the Department of Health began several programs to combat infant mortality. Subsidized powder milk was provided to poor families and free healthcare was provided to all children up to age of six.

Providing clean water to all citizens was set as one of the country’s major priorities. In addition, proper sanitation and garbage collection was also mandated to all municipalities. Every village and town were required to provide public water fountains. Meanwhile clean water projects were started to provide clean municipal water to all residents. Included in the project was the construction of sewer and sewer treatment plants in major towns and cities.

The construction of hospitals and health clinics was accelerated with the number of hospitals in Portugal increasing by 30% from 1930s level. The immigration of doctors and medical professions during the 1930s and from the refugees streaming into the country as well as increasing the number of medical graduates from Portuguese Universities increased the availability of medical care in the country and some of the more remote and poorer regions saw their first permanent doctors. As part of the government’s health initiative a nationwide immunization program (metropolitan and Ultramar) was started with mandatory immunizations offered for: Smallpox, Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis.

In 1942 the growth of shanty towns around most Portuguese large cities forced the Portuguese government to increase funding to the Affordable Housing project and set target date of 1955 to eliminate all shanty towns in the country and provide clean running water to all citizens including those in Ultramar provinces. During the 1940s the number of low cost homes for low income families increased and by 1945 over 10,000 homes for low income families were being built yearly.

In 1942 EFACEC which had taken over Siemens assets in Portugal received additional technology transfers from the parent company in Germany and began manufacturing the first medical equipment such as x-rays and other diagnostic equipment in the country. This was very crucial for the expansion health in the country was just beginning.

In 1941 Portugal greatly expanded primary education throughout the country with mandatory primary education and the building of thousands new schools. For the first time, mandatory primary education for all children living in Europe and major Portuguese African cities and other economic important locations was mandated. This caused major infrastructure and personnel problems due to lack of schools and teachers. Schools were ordered built in every village with more than 50 school age children or in each parish depending on the number of children. While primary education had been available in Portugal for decades up to 1941 attendance had not been mandatory and many poor and rural families chose not to send their children to school (mostly for economic reasons and lack of schools). Free public education from grade 1 to 6 was enforced for the first time on a largely illiterate population. The task proved a huge challenge with thousands of new teachers and administrators required as well as in many locations physical structures and organizational resources did not exist at the time. Desperate for help the government to approach the one institution that had for centuries been entrusted with education in Portugal, the Catholic Church, but before it could do so there were political and legal issues that had to be resolved. During the Republic the Catholic Church had been targeted by anti-church laws due to its close relationship with the Portuguese Monarchy. In 1941 the Portuguese government and Catholic Church entered into negotiations on the Catholic Church’s role in the Portuguese education system as well as its place within the country. While the relationship between the Catholic Church and Portuguese government had improved since the fall of the anti-Catholic Republic, Portugal had not re-established diplomatic relationship with Holy See or repealed many of the anti-clerical laws enacted by Republic. The 1941 Portuguese-Catholic Church agreement brought the church into the education system as a partner.[1] Even with the Catholic Church as a partner the government soon realized they lacked thousands of trained teachers and administrators therefore a new Primary Education initiative was instituted in 1942. The Primary Education initiative recruited thousands of educated young women (ages 15-22) as teaching assistants gradually taking over the education of early years (grades 1-3) while trained teachers concentrated on teaching higher grades. Implementation of the program was held up in many areas by lack of schools with some students being taught in warehouses and barns till primary schools were built.[2]

In 1943, the government began the construction of the first of hundreds of new secondary schools so students who had finished primary school could continue their education; priority was given to the brightest students. To facilitate students with high grades from poor families to continue their education in high school their families were provided with a subsidy equal to child’s wage for them to attend school.

In the early 1940s the three Portuguese universities in Lisbon, Coimbra and Porto became a hothead of activity. The migration in the late 1930s as well as the new arrivals of refugees brought to Portugal many new university professors but more importantly it also brought to Portugal a huge number of university students who together with the first wave of secondary school graduates doubled the enrollment at the Portuguese universities. Included in the new Portuguese University students was the growing Africans, Indians and Asians students. By 1943 with the universities operating at between 100-150% of capacity and many qualified students unable to obtain their university education in the country several expansions in all three universities were started. In 1944, the Department of Education presented to the government a comprehensive plan to meet the continuing projected university enrollment increase of 25% a year with the founding of eight new Universities. In July 1944, the new university program was approved and within one-year construction on first four new universities was started. In Metropolitan Portugal construction of the universities of Aveiro and Minho were started but more importantly construction of country’s first universities in Africa were started: University of Luanda, and University of Lourenco Marques.

[1] During the negotiations, the Church sensing the desperation of the government tried to leverage the government’s need to gain many of its lost privileges and influence. In the negotiations the church seemed to agree with the government request all that it asked in return was just exclusive access to schools, provide guidance not only to the government but also in guiding the drafting of government legislation, to which the government refused its demands. On 15 September 1941, the Minister of Education presented the government’s offer which was far short of what the church was asking. The church at first refused, with negotiations on the verge of collapsing the government advised it would instead reach out to Protestant faiths. The tactic worked, and the church agreed to compromise. On 1 October 1941 an agreement was reached that not only normalized relationship between Portugal and the Holy See but also allowed the church to establish a new partnership in the country. Although gone were the days of its dominance and monopoly, the agreement went along way to address many of the repressive Republic laws. The main points of the agreement were:

  • Seized church property was returned to Catholic Church, although non-religious buildings would be taxed like all other private property;
  • Catholic Church would not be the only religious group allowed in schools;
  • All schools including church run schools had to offer same curriculum as public schools;
  • Government would be the final authority on all citizenship and civil rights of all people regardless of religion, sex, race or color;
  • Continued separation of religious matrimony from civil. All couples who wished to marry in the church had be married civilly first;
  • Civil divorce permitted for all people including those married through church, but religious annulments could only be granted after civil divorce;
  • Civil marriage allowed for all divorced people;
[2] It would take the government till 1950s to rollout the program to entire country including to all major cities and towns of Portuguese Africa, Portuguese India and Portuguese possessions in Asia. At the time the majority of the Africans, Indians and Asians living in Portuguese territory did not even speak Portuguese.

Portugal faced some great hurdles as it tried to modernize both its education and health sectors. Both of which were in dire needs and lagging in comparison to other western countries, both Metropolitan Portugal and its overseas provinces.. Questions/ Comments?

Return in 2 weeks on April 28 as we post the changes to Security during the war.
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Good to see an effort to expand all levels of education earlier than OTL.
Education was a critical missed opportunity for the Portuguese government, iOTL it is important for readers to understand the mentality of Salazar and those in power around him during the 1930s and 1940s. He was still thinking in terms of limited education for mass population governed by an educated elite. It took till the late 1950s and early 1960s for the educated numbers to increase and Salazar influence to be tempered for the growth in education to allow for an real growth in opportunity for many in Portugal but unfortunately just as it looked like it would enjoy the fruits of increased educated population the country got sucked into the colonial wars accounting for 25-40% of its expenditures.

iTTL so here we have a need for educated people and a government willing to encourage it. The important to understand that the education system was heavily politically controlled by government. Universities while a normal hotbed of political dissatisfaction and opposing government attitudes the security apparatus was heavily integrated in all school system. With students participating in the reporting of suspicious political discussions such as left leaning professors and students.
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1940s - The War Years (1940 - 1945) - Security


1940 – 1949 (cont.)

The War Years 1940 – 1945 (cont.)


In 1940 Augusto Cancela de Abreu became the new Minister of Interior due to government’s need to address many of the security issues facing the country. Foremost amongst its needs was the need to integrate the colonial police forces that still operated in many of the Ultramar provinces. Border and internal security became urgent as the country faced increased activity by foreign agents as well as increased social and cultural integration problems.

Starting in 1941 the Guarda National Republicana (GNR) and Policia Seguranca Publica (PSP) forces were expanded not only in Metropolitan Portugal but also in Ultramar so that by 1945 Portugal had a unified police force providing modern policing throughout the whole country.

During 1940 and 1941 several PL members were involved in anti-immigrant and anti-African attacks in both Metropolitan and Portuguese Africa. Minister Abreu ordered a crackdown on the perpetrators by the GNR and PSP. Meanwhile the PVDE created a list of PL anti-immigrant and anti-African supporters and sympathizers. Over 10,000 names were gathered and in June of 1941 the security forces with the assistance of the military conducted sweeps and detained close to 90% of those on the list before PL and its members became aware of the sweeps. As the last people on the list were gathered the Portuguese government gave those in custody an ultimatum, join the Spanish Blue Division being formed and fight the communists in Russia or be sentenced to 20 years in prison on charges of sedition.[1] The vast majority chose to join the Blue Division rather than face long prison sentence, those that refused were imprisoned. In 1942 the Portuguese government offered those in prison another opportunity to join the Blue Division and about half decided to join.[2]

In 1943, the PVDE underwent the first of several re-organizations to better deal with the increased spy networks operating in Portugal. PVDE agents were charged with identifying both Nazi and Allied spies in country.[3] Regional and Lisbon headquarters then decided which ones needed to “disappear” and which could continue to give the impression of a successful network in Portugal. The PVDE showed its ruthlessness and efficiency when in the week after Portugal’s declaration of war against Germany the PVDE swooped in and arrested the remaining German spies left in the country. The Portuguese also identified many “Allied spies” as double agents, some falsely and some correctly in both Portugal and elsewhere. This disrupted the Allied intelligence gathering in the country and many were either terminated or let go by the Allies. The PVDE was also responsible for controlling security in many sensitive Portuguese towns and military sites. The Viana do Castelo Naval base was one of the most highly sensitive sites of special interest to foreign agents in the country. Through double agents, disinformation and disappearances the PVDE attempted to limit information of the Portuguese navy and its U-boat activities at the base.

Internally the PVDE primary purpose was the detection of those who through their actions or words undermined the authority of the government. It accomplished this by establishing an extensive network of informants throughout the country that provided it with information about people living in the country. People of special interest to the PVDE were communists who it attempted to eradicate.

In 1943 the PVDE established a specially trained division charged with carrying out special missions outside the country. They operated not only in Nazi occupied Europe but also in Allied countries. These agents were responsible for extracting or eliminating specific individuals or targets outside Portugal’s border. In 1944 and 1945 the division was responsible for the extraction of several Portuguese and foreign individuals from persecution by Nazis and from advancing Soviet troops. They were responsible for eliminating several Gestapo and German military individuals before they could expose or apprehend Portuguese assets in those countries. In 1945 the division’s capabilities in the Indian subcontinent was expanded to deal with the growing civil and political unrest in British India.

From 1940 to 1945 PVDE continued their information gathering and infiltration of Indian communists and Independence movement organizations concentrating on those closest to Portuguese India. Orders from Lisbon were that no action was to be taken against these groups unless an attack was planned against Portuguese India.

Internal Migration
During the first half of the 1940s the European population in Portuguese overseas provinces jumped from 240,000 to 571,000. This unprecedented migration of people was brought on by rapid economic development in the Portuguese overseas provinces especially in Africa. During the war years, mining, resource development and agriculture was expanded in Portuguese Africa to meet both Portuguese and export demands as well as expansion of manufacturing and the European population in Portuguese Africa doubled to 571,000.[4]

Migration within Portugal and its overseas provinces was not limited to Europeans. Africans from Portuguese Africa were brought to Metropolitan Portugal in large numbers to work in entry level jobs as well as fill the growing demand for agricultural workers as industrialization continued to depopulate the countryside. During the 1st half of the 1940s the African population in Metropolitan Portugal grew from 95,000 to over 309,000, while the need for Portuguese speaking people and economic opportunities also attracted thousands of Africans to Portuguese India and Asia which by 1945 had an African population of over 34,000. Meanwhile Portuguese speaking Indians migrated freely throughout Portugal and its overseas provinces, and by 1945 more than 209,000 Indians lived outside Portuguese India.

Portuguese Immigration
While the movement of people around Portugal and its overseas provinces was quite remarkable, the most amazing aspect of the country by end of the war was the 1 million+ Europeans immigrants living in Portugal.[5] During the war years’ immigration to Portugal was unplanned and was a result of Spanish citizens either fleeing economic depression and starvation in post-civil war Spain or refugees fleeing Nazi occupied Europe and using Portugal as port of exit to the Americas.

Following the Spanish Civil War, the Spanish economy continued suffering from economic depression and rising unemployment. Meanwhile to the west the Portuguese economy continued expanding and in need of workers, which began attacking thousands of unemployed Spanish.[6] Complicating Spanish citizens desire to migrate to Portugal was the Iberian Pact which severely restricted Spanish citizens from living in Metropolitan Portugal, the one exception was that Portuguese overseas provinces were exempt from this restriction and Spanish migrants arriving in Portugal were either returned to Spain or provided with free transport to Portuguese Africa as legal migrants.[7]

From September 1939 to January 1940, Germany demanded that its engineers and technicians working in Portugal return home. This order was opposed by the Portuguese government who feared the loss of many highly skilled workers and engineers as well as by many of the Germans living in Portugal. The Portuguese government responded by offering Portuguese nationality to any German and their families who wished to remain in Portugal. The move angered Germany and the German Embassy issued a strongly worded statement and the German government’s opinion of Portugal suffered greatly as a result of this hostile action. While Portuguese felt it was risky for Portugal to cross Germany, the country benefitted greatly from this action as less than half the Germans returned home and the remainder stayed in Portugal and Portuguese industry, oil and raw material output suffered less than 15% reduction due to loss of German workers.

During the late 1930s, tens of thousands of Jews and other educated Europeans had immigrated to Portugal as the country struggling with shortage of professionals searched for people wishing to immigrate. Due to its poor reputation, Portugal had a tough time attracting immigrants and became a reluctant home to thousands of Jews. The emigration from Germany and other Nazi aligned countries stopped in 1939 when war broke out. In 1940 after France fell to the Germany thousands of refugees began passing through Spain and Portugal to get to USA and other countries on the American continents. While in Portugal some of the refugees contacted the immigrants from the 1930s living in Portugal and many of the refugees were authorized to live in both Metropolitan Portugal and its African colonies.

Portuguese government seeing the economic value of many of the refugees began interviewing the refugees as they arrived in Portugal and those it felt had the skills it needed were offered the ability to stay in Portugal, those that accepted moving to Portuguese Africa were also offered free housing. The biggest limiting factor to the entry of refugees into Portugal was the restrictive transit policies of Spain. In 1941, the Portuguese government was able to enter into an agreement with Spain to allow for easier transit within Spain for refugees wishing to travel to Portugal. From 1940 to 1944 Portugal would see over 250,000 refugees, of which 90% were Jews escaping Nazi Occupied Europe, pass through its borders of which 91,000 accepted Portuguese offer to live in Portugal.[8] [9] [10]

During the war, Portugal accepted close to 20,000 refugee orphans first from Spain and then as part of the refugees streaming into Portugal. These orphans were adopted by Portuguese families.

The processing and control of the refugees and immigrants was the responsibility of the PVDE. During the immigration of Germans and Jews in the 1930s several difficulties and issues came to light. Foremost of these issues and problems was the personal prejudice when dealing with non-Portuguese and more specific non-Catholics by many members of the PVDE. After the war started in 1939, a purge of the identified PVDE members and officers from the ranks of the PVDE agents processing refugees and immigrants was performed. The worse of them were dismissed from the force and the remaining officers and staff were retrained and placed under watch. All along the Portuguese-Spanish border immigration offices dealt with foreigners wishing to immigrate to Portugal but in winter of 1939-1940 when the first wave of refugees fleeing the Nazis arrived at Portuguese border the PVDE setup refugee processing centers along the major Portuguese - Spanish border towns and cities. Refugees were processed and provided transit documents which allowed them to move through Portugal towards the major ports namely Lisbon and Porto. In the summer of 1940 refugees with skills Portugal needed and who were considered non-political threat (non-communists) were identified and contacted while they were in Portugal by immigration officials to convince them to settle in Portugal.

[1] The exception was those in poor health or over age of 60. These were assessed by government doctors who also requisitioned their medical files. Those not eligible for military service in Blue Division were offered to either quit the PL and remain quiet and abstain from all comments regarding both government policy and anti-immigration and non-white population or be imprisoned. Both options were for a period of 20 years. Almost all took the first option but their inability to adhere to the agreement meant more than half ended up in prison.

[2] From 1941- 1945 Portugal accepted back 2,958 wounded PL veterans. In 1945, less than 2,000 shell shocked and exhausted PL veterans returned to Portugal. All returning PL veterans met with security forces prior to their release and agreed to not participate in any event against the government of any person living in the country. Of those that stayed incarcerated which numbered slightly less than 1,000 they were released in the early 1950s to a vastly different country to which many had a hard time adjusting to.

[3] Like iOTL, Lisbon was a place with a high concentration of spies from both sides, but the Portuguese government enforced at least an appearance of peace between both sides.

[4] Of the 571,000 Europeans living in Portuguese overseas provinces in 1945, 332,000 lived in Angola, 157,000 in Mozambique, 42,000 in Guinea, 20,000 in Portuguese India, 12,000 in Timor/Flores with remaining 8,000 spread out over the various other colonies.

[5] This figure did not include the 500,000+ children of the refugees who had been born in Portugal and had received automatic Portuguese citizenship.

[6] In 1945, Spanish GDP still had not recovered to 1930 level. During the war, Spanish emigration to US or Spanish speaking Latin America was not an option for many Spanish. The US continued to place severe restrictions on migrations from Southern Europe and Latin America’s economic conditions in the 1940s did not offer Spanish with better economic opportunities.

[7] From 1940 to 1945 592,562 Spanish immigrated to Portugal and at end of war Spanish immigration to Portugal was growing approx. 15% a year. It was estimated that over 100,000 Spanish worked illegally in Portugal during WWII.

[8] During the 1930s Portugal was for many Jews a destination of last resort as a result of the British Empire and United States closing their borders. iOTL the British Empire returned thousands of German Jews refugees back to Germany who ended up dying in the Nazi death camps. The positive treatment of thousands of Jews and their integration into professional Portuguese society changed the attitudes of many Jews not only in Europe but also throughout the rest of world. iOTL over 30,000 Jews escaped Nazi Germany through Portugal during WWII, while iTTL Portugal’s new reputation and more importantly need for professionals led the Portuguese government to facilitate the transit of close to 10 times that number through Spain and into Portuguese refugee transition centers.

[9] iOTL Portugal through the action of several diplomats such as Aristides de Sousa Mendes, the Portuguese consulate in Bordeaux, provided Portuguese passports and travel documents to thousands of people fleeing Nazi Germany including an undetermined number of Jews. These refugees with new Portuguese travel documents were able to continue their escape to South America and USA because Portugal could not offer jobs and/or support.

[10] iOTL Portugal was an important gateway for refugees but Salazar’s fear of Germany and lack of opportunities in Portugal meant that all continued on their journey to the Americas. While some criticized the Portuguese government lack of support it was important to recognize the delicate position Portugal faced iOTL. The threat or worry that any Portuguese action could of resulted in either German or Spanish response was a legitimate fear that Portuguese government faced throughout the war.

Portugal problems during the war in terms of migration was one of how much do we help and how much do we ignore and lastly what can we do. iOTL these questions greatly affected the country and Salazar for all his disgust and opposition to what the Nazi were doing was in many aspects a very cautious individual who was genially afraid the Nazi would move into the Peninsula or even support the Nationalist Spanish to attack Portugal. So while the Portuguese did nothing publicly to help refugees they did allow them passage. While the refugees waited for transport out of Europe they stayed at homes or hotels which several people after stated that Portugal "profited" from the refugees. I disagree because we cannot really know what it was like to live with that threat for many years. So relieved were the Portuguese that the war had ended without involving Portugal that the Portuguese built "Christ the King" statue across the Tagus Estuary from Lisbon in thanks to God for sparing the country from the horrors of the war. So how different is Portugal here from iOTL:
  • Portugal military is 3-5 times stronger both in strength as well as capability, so not an easy conquest for the Spanish so that threat is ruled out. Plus the benefits they are receiving from Portugal makes this even more remote.
  • Till the end of 1943 the portuguese were deceiving the Nazi to think it would be a matter of before they joined. It was not till the Nazi were being pressed by attacks from all sides and on the defensive that that Portuguese duplicity was found out but by then the Nazi ability to invade the Peninsula was gone.
  • Portugal not only provided critical war materials but they had something even more precious 'black gold" which was just as prized and till the bitter end were attempting to extract as much as possible from the Portuguese.
  • Portuguese development needs combined with the other factors convinced the government to play a more ambitious and active role in the protection of the refugees. Paying for safe houses and support in their journey through Spain. Facilitating their passage in Portugal and even providing vouchers for refugees to use to pay for part of their costs within the country. Yes the country was showing humanitarian side but it also helped when they talked to the refugees and offered them ability to stay and settle in the country. At times it was former refugees who would greet former friends or acquaintances and in those special few moments when they would greet a family member. Questions/ Comments?
As for the movement there were several practicalities in the movement. First those with the education and knowledge were needed in many places in Africa that were in dire need of their skills. Secondly in many of these places there was still a huge human need to develop these projects or to simply manage farms in a country side that was half empty as industrialization attracted more and more individuals. Industrialization that over the years spread out to interior cities also such as Castelo Branco, Braga and Evora. This had the affect of attracting rural people who would not of considered moving to Africa, or burgeoning coastal cities of Lisbon and Porto but were willing to move to cities close by. Over the years the need for farm hands grew so acute that harvest and planting was in jeopardy in certain districts. The movement of tens of thousands of Africans, Indians and Asians to the rural areas and even cities had a profound social impact that we have not really addressed so far. iOTL till 1974 the vast majority of the European Portuguese who never traveled outside of Metropolitan Africa never had any substancial encounters with any Africans, Indians and Asians. So here we have a forced integration with all the good and bad aspects of it.

Return in 2 weeks on May 12 as we post two sections Culture and Sports and Foreign Affairs during the war.
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I’m happy that Portugal are helping Nazi victims run and stay in Portugal.
What kind of role does Aristides de Sousa Mendes play in this timeline?
iOTL Aristides de Sousa was the Portuguese consul in the French city of Bordeaux who went against Portuguese government (Salazar) orders not to allow refugees into the country after the fall of France unless they had a valid authorization from the destination country. He was reprimanded and was forced to resign (although he continued receiving his salary till his death in 1953). In 1930s Salazar's government afraid of Portugal being over run by refugees who could not escape and the country be forced to send them back or forced to look after them issued two proclamations to its diplomats (proclamation 10 and 14) which specifically set out strict rules about transit through country. When Aristides went against government orders and issues thousands of visas after fall of France he was reprimanded.

1) there never was proclamation 10 and 14 which banned refugees from entering country. Proclamation 12 issued in 1936 allowed for emigration of any person be they catholic, jew or protestant who was from Europe and was not sympathetic, supporter or member of any organization or party that was banned in Portugal (socialist or communist). That was the proclamation that Portuguese embassies and consulates operated under to process emigrants both inside Nazi Germany and elsewhere in Europe. Under that proclamation over 200,000 emigrants moved to Portugal from 1936 to onset of war. These were emigrants though and not refugees.
2) Between 1939 and 1940 after the outset of war and before the fall of western Europe to the Nazis Portuguese embassies and consulates outside of Nazi Germany were seeing refugee claimants and emigrants from opening to closing with some sleeping infront of the doors so they would be seen the next day. While thousands of refugees were allowed transit through the country priority was given to those wishing to emigrate to Portugal. Tens of thousand of new emigrants were approved. The consulate in Bordeaux under Aristides was especially busy for France was one of the primary countries hosting hundred of thousands of refugees. From the time of Nazi attack on France to its surrender at end of June 1940 the consulate was inundated with refugees, emigrants and those claiming they wished to emigrate for people were desperate to escape. Aristides the consul directed his staff to issue passes on mass and in 2 months the consulate issued over 50,000 passes. This was noticed by Lisbon and in July 1940 he was summoned to Lisbon and the Consulate closed and staff went on holidays. When it reopened in September the new consul operated under a much greater restrictions since the city was now occupied by Germans.
3) Aristides de Sousa Mendes arrived in Lisbon on July 10 1940 and was reprimanded for his actions and docked 1 years pay and put on leave. He was placed under house arrest at a beach house provided by the government in Colares beach town. On September 1 1940 he was recalled by foreign minister and told he was being named the new Portuguese ambassador to Vinci France. He was given a quota of 1 emigrant for every 3 refugees he and the Portuguese consuls in France provided passage.
4) From 1940 to end of war he represented both Portugal diplomatic mission in France and ran a network of safehouse both in Southern France and northeast Spain providing passage to ten of thousands of refugees and new emigrants. Together with Portuguese consulate in Burgos Spain they provided a safe transit route through Spain to Portugal.

Note: Refugees had to have funds to travel both through Spain and Portugal as well as means to pay for transportation out of Portugal. Those with many skills required by the Portuguese were identified and if even if they lacked the funds were granted access and vouchers for their travel. In all during Aristides tenure as Ambassador of Vichy France over 200,000 Refugee/emigrants travelled to Portugal during the war.

In 1946 at age of 61 he retired back to Portugal and lived a comfortable life in Lisbon. He was very well liked by the huge emigrant communities in Portugal and was hosted by many over the years. In 1950 he was recalled to active service and named the Portuguese ambassador to Israel. A post he held till 1955 when old age and health forced him to retire. He died in Lisbon in 1956 and received a state funeral. Several books would be written and documentaries made about his great humanity and love for those fleeing violence and war.

Aristides de Sousa Mendes 1950 after announcement he would become Portuguese Federation 1st Ambassador to Israel​
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Why is Indonesia in the tags? Is that a hint at what's to come?
The Portuguese have eastern part of Timor but Indonesia, and as well India where Portugal also had enclaves were problematic to the continued presence of the Portuguese in those areas. Both India and Indonesia traversed a somewhat chaotic time at time of their independence (late 1940s) which if had moved in a slightly different way would of made Portuguese presence easier and the Portuguese might of even profited from such a different independent scenario. So we will be posting a different British India and Dutch Indonesia independence outcome in the future.
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1940s - The War Years (1940 - 1945) - Culture and Sports


1940 – 1949 (cont.)

The War Years 1940 – 1945 (cont.)

Culture and Sports

The Minister of Culture and Sport, Antonio Ferro continued using Portuguese radio stations to provide the people with information and promote nationalism. Portuguese music and culture programming continued to grow; programing improved and expanded to include concerts, sports events, serialized shows, information (on variety of topics such as health, agriculture, commerce and industry events as well as news) and music. As the number of radio stations grew throughout the nation covering every corner of the country, national programing spread and so that all people could listen to national news or government announcements. The first such announcement that was carried live from Azores to Timor was the government declaration of war against Nazi Germany. In the announcement, President Carmona spoke of the need for Portugal to stand up for the oppressed, liberate those being persecuted and stop the Nazi “crimes against humanity” which most Portuguese did not understand at time. The popularity of the radio stations continued to be the primary means of providing the average Portuguese with information on health, economy, and educational shows while at same time providing entertainment and music.

In an effort to spread the government message, as well as inform people the government made production of radios became an important priority for the government. Following the occupation of the Netherlands, the Portuguese government nationalized Phillips’ subsidiary in Portugal “Fábrica Portuguesa de Artigos Elétricos” (FAPAE) and expanded it in order to increase Radio production in Portugal. In the early years, many parts had to be imported from US but as the war progressed it gradually was able to source more components in Portugal. The primary manufacturer of electronic components in Portugal during the war was Portugal Siemens Lda. S.A.R.L (EFACEC). Both before the war and during the war the Portuguese government negotiated several agreements for Siemens to transfer several patents to Portugal in an effort to build electronics in Portugal, while Siemens and Germany were reluctant at first, they increased their cooperation in 1942 both as incentive for Portugal to join the Axis and secondly to export back to Germany where production was being effected by Allied bombings. By the time Portuguese plants were beginning to manufacture components that could be sent back to Germany Portugal had joined the Allies and the government nationalized the company.

Following the declaration of war in 1944, Portuguese movie theatres began select screenings of a Portuguese documentary called “A Solução Final: O Inferno na Terra”, “The final solution: Hell on Earth” about German extermination camps,[1] but it also showed average Germans such as those in Germany and Portuguese diplomats efforts trying to rescue thousands of Jews. The government plan was for the documentary to only be shown to men over the age of 35 since it was deemed disturbing but for all the government’s efforts information about the documentary leaked to the general public and not only females but also younger audiences also demanded to see it, and while officially it was only supposed to be shown to men over 35 many females and younger men also saw it. The documentary proved instrumental in turning public opinion against Nazi Germany.[2]

The 1940s became known as the start Portugal’s golden age of movies as the production of movies reached 23 a year by 1945. The number of movie theatres continued to grow as more and more towns got their first theatres. Till the advent of television news reals shown before movies were the primary means in which Portuguese got to witness new developments in the country. Infrastructure development and growing industrialization was prominently featured. So too was the showing of Portuguese armed forces battles in Southern France, Germany and East Indies.[3] “Living in harmony” and “We are all Portuguese” became the two primary themes of radio programming and movies. Movie companies were instructed to include people of different races and parts of empire in movies. Comradery was the general idea and that Portuguese of various nationalities and ethnic backgrounds would band together to defeat an enemy or overcome a natural disaster.

In 1940s the traveling cinema companies began traveling Africa countryside showing movies in rural towns and villages there for first time.[4]

During the 1940s the growth of the economy and increased wealth provided an increased appetite for cultural entertainment and in response Portuguese theatres, concerts, opera and other entertainment grew. The number of orchestras, opera, ballet and theatres grew to meet the demand. Some of Europe’s classical musicians, opera singers and ballet dancers refugees passing through Portugal were drawn into the burgeoning industry and stayed in the country.

Starting in the late 1930s youth sport centers started being constructed in cities major towns with the goal of preparing athletes for 1940 Olympics. The onset of war and cancellation of the 40 and 44 Olympics did not put a stop to the construction of these sports centers instead it provided Portugal extra time to continue expanding them all over the country including Africa, India and Asia. Thousands of youths took part in organized sports at these centers. In 1942, regional sporting events showcasing their best athletes started being organized in various provinces.

From 1940 to 1945 Portuguese soccer mushroomed through the country. Several large and strong teams emerged in Angola such as Sagrada Esperança from Luanda and Desportivo de Lourenço Marques.

[1] The documentary had been filmed by Portuguese crew who visited the Auschwitz Death Camp in September of 1942 under the guise to create a system to eliminate Africans and other undesirables in Portugal, this premise was kept from the Portuguese. The Nazi gladly provided a tour of the facilities and boasted on its efficiencies and how it would eliminate the world’s Jewish problem. The documentary then showed Portuguese diplomats working around Nazi occupied Europe smuggling Jews and those destined for those camps to Portugal where many would settle and dedicate their lives to Portuguese wellbeing. Prior to the declaration of war PVDE operatives extracted the last of the Portuguese diplomats still present in Nazi Occupied Europe as well as any Germans featured in the documentary.

[2] Foreign diplomats in Lisbon also saw the documentary and wrote to their governments to keep the information out of their countries for as long as possible. It would only be after the war had ended that the general public became aware of the Nazi extermination camps.

[3] While several military movies were made in the years following the war of Portuguese armed forces in Europe and South East Asia, news reels during the war years showing major Portuguese victories in France such as the defeat of German Army Group G and surrender of commander Von Schwerin the commander of Army Group G to French and Portuguese officials or the capture of Kupang on the island of Timor which as cheered by movie goers throughout the country.

[4] Due to the lack of electricity in these towns and villages the traveling technicians took along generators to power the projectors.

Portugal's development of both its culture and sports were severely impacted by war but even so the Portuguese continued to make huge strides in both developing its culture but also in government getting its messages out. For majority of the poor, illiterate and uneducated people lacked both means and ability to read newspapers so radio became the only means to reach people. In 1941 the Ministry of Culture issued proclamation 15 which provided instructions, funding for the operations of drinking establishments. Since majority of people had no electricity or if they did the cost was expensive it was imperative for the government to get its message to the people. The best place for them to do so was at places that people met such as taverns and coffee shops. So both were required to have a radio (in cases of no electricity generator required), they had to be on from opening to close. Since all radio stations were government controlled or monitored there was no stipulation which station to listen to. At first taverns or coffee shops were against it since they had to bear some of the costs but it time they realized the benefit of them as people came to hear news, sports, music or serialized dramas. As for sports the importance of the spread of the sports centers will become evident following the war and forward. More on that in next sports post. Questions/ Comments?

Next Chapter Foreign Affairs to follow later today. .
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So the Portuguese in this TL knew about the holocaust and made a film about it. But the rest of the world tried to suppress the news, why would they do this?

Because from what I at least thought the allies would use this as an excuse to bring more nations to their side and to bring more moral to their righteous war!