Foreigners now 8pc of Spanish population

27th April 2005, Comments 0 comments

27 April 2005, MADRID-Foreigners now make up over eight percent of Spain's total population, according to the census latest figures.

27 April 2005

MADRID-Foreigners now make up over eight percent of Spain's total population, according to the census latest figures.

Spain's population is now almost 44 million, of whom 3.7m, or about 8.4 percent of the total, are foreigners.

The preliminary census statistics indicate that Spain's population grew by 770,000 in 2004, with most of that increase coming via immigration, which added 650,000 people.

In comparison, in 2003, foreigners represented 7 percent of the overall population.

And the figures from the Spanish National Institute of Statistics (INE) showed in the first three months of 2005 alone, 200,000 more foreigners were registered with authorities.

The biggest European contingent were Britons of whom 224,800 were registered, followed by Germans, of whom there were 131,900.

The British make up the fifth largest group of foreigners living in Spain.

The biggest group are Moroccans, of which there are some 500,000 in Spain, accounting for just under 14 percent of the foreign-born population of the country.

Ecuadorians, numbering 491,800, make up about 13.3 percent of the immigrant population in Spain, down from just under 16 percent in the Jan. 1, 2004, census.

Colombians, who had held the number three spot on the list of immigrant groups in Spain, have been overtaken by Romanians, with 314,300 emigres, or 8.5 percent of the total immigrant population.

Colombians are now in fourth place on the list, accounting for 7.3 percent of the total immigrant population, the INE said.

In regional terms, Catalonia in north-east Spain has seen the fastest rise in immigrants, with 170,000 arriving last year. This was followed by Andalusia (142,000), Valencia (129,000) and Madrid (116,000).

In relative terms, the Balearic Islands still have the largest foreign-Spanish population, who make up 15 percent of all residents. Madrid is in second place, Murcia third and Valencia fourth with 12 percent.

Spain is currently coming to the end of a three-month amnesty programme for illegal immigrants that ends on 7 May and is expected to normalize the status of some 700,000 foreigners, the majority of them Latin Americans.

Requests for legalization are made by employers of the candidates rather than the immigrants themselves. The two main requirements are that a candidate demonstrate that he or she has been in Spain for at least six months, and that they have a contract for another six months' employment.

Authorities stress that the number of unregistered foreigners living in Spain – both from EU countries and those outside Europe – is thought to represent another one million.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news 

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