Numbers of UK residents in Spain rose in 2018 despite Brexit

More entered in 2018.
More entered in 2018. / SUR
  • New national population data for 1 January this year shows Spain now has a total population of 47 million again, and almost 250,000 are British, a yearly increase of 2.5 per cent

The population of Spain has reached 47 million again for the first time since 2013. According to the national statistics institute's advance figures for l January this year, Spain had 47,007,367 people. This represents a 0.6 per cent year-on-year growth and a third consecutive year of increases.

New immigration was the main reason, with 290,573 arrivals, while the number of Spanish nationals dropped 6,186.

The British community increased 2.5 per cent in the twelve months to 1 January, helped by more people registering for the first time ahead of Brexit this year. There are now officially 249,015 UK nationals "empadronados" at Spanish town halls, by January's data.

Of the total population in Spain, 10.7 per cent are foreign. There was a big rise in the Venezuelan population last year, some 44 per cent, because of the economic unrest there, increasing to 137,589.

The three biggest foreign national groups are, in order of size, Moroccans, Romanians and British. Ecuadorians, who were once the biggest group in Spain, have now fallen into eighth place.

By region, the most populated parts of the country are the same as at the start of 2018, with Andalucía home to the most, followed by Catalonia then the Madrid region. The autonomous regions with the smallest populations are La Rioja, Cantabria and Navarra.