Spain: Demographics of foreign resident population

According to a report published this week by the Spanish Immigration Observatory, the number of legal foreign residents in Spain at the end of last September reached over 1.8 million. The report gives a breakdown of where the foreign residents come from:

  • 600,000 are Latinamericans,
  • 478,500 are Europeans from EU member-states,
  • 471,285 are Africans,
  • 143,174 are Europeans from non-EU member-states
  • 133,147 are from Asia
  • 16,700 afre from the USA
  • 1,600 from Oceania or Australasia

The 121,107 Britons living in Spain are the 4th largest national group of foreign residents after Moroccans (365,846), Ecuadorians, (202,294) and Colombians (128,367)These figures are expected to change radically once the 3-month period granted by the Socialist government to illegal immigrants early next year has come and gone. According to new legislation passed last month, immigrants who have been living and working in Spain for a minimum period of six months and can produce a contract signed by their employees will have 3 months early next year to legalise their situation.

Once the period is over, the Spanish Immigration Secretary, Consuelo Rumi, said that the figure of foreign residents in Spain could rise by as much as one million.

The most popular areas of Spain among legal foreign residents are:

  • Catalonia: 423,988
  • Madrid: 394,661
  • Valencia: 216,353;
  • Andalucia: 208.812;
  • Canary Islands: 122.292;
  • Balearic Islands 88.575,
  • Murcia: 86.108 and
  • Castilla y Leon: 52.867.

All other regions are home to less than 50,000 foreign residents. Related links: