Malaga will account for nearly 60% of Andalucía's growth in population. / sur

Malaga’s population will equal that of Seville in fifteen years

The latest forecasts show that the province will have gained 283,000 inhabitants by 2037, bringing the total to nearly two million, the fifth-highest demographic growth in the country

NURIA TRIGUERO Malaga

By 2037 Andalucía will have fewer children and many more elderly people, a higher foreign population and more people living alone. These demographic changes will affect the whole region equally, but each province will evolve differently. For example, Seville will no longer have the highest population in 15 years’ time: that of Malaga will have equalled it by then.

These are some of the conclusions in a report from the National Institute of Statistics (INE) on population from 2022 to 2037. They estimate that Malaga will be the province with the fifth-highest demographic growth in Spain, with another 283,000 inhabitants (16% in proportional terms) and a total approaching two million inhabitants. Only in Madrid, Barcelona, Baleares and Alicante is the population expected to grow more.

According to the INE, in the next 15 years Malaga will account for nearly 60% of population growth in Andalucía. The region will go from the present 8,518,000 inhabitants to over 9,000,000; in other words, another 488,000 residents.

But not all Andalusian provinces will grow at the same rate. After Malaga will come Almería with an additional 110,000 residents; Granada with a further 60,000 and Huelva, with 47,000. Seville, which at present is the province with the highest population (1,960,000) will only gain another 37,000 during that period.

In Cadiz the population growth will be even smaller, with under 24,000 new inhabitants, while two provinces will lose population: the number in Cordoba and Jaén will drop by 27,000 and 45,000 respectively by 2037.

Migrants will "save" the situation

The INE says migrants will “save” Spain from losing population in the next half-century. “The progressive and uninterrupted increase in deaths, which are always higher than births, will lead to a negative balance during the whole period. This will be overcome by positive migration, which will increase the population. The increase will, therefore, be exclusively the result of international immigration,” the report said.

The population born in Spain will progressively reduce and will pass from the present 84.5% of the total to 63.5% within 50 years.

The forecasts also show that Malaga will receive an average of 20,000 ‘internal’ migrants (people who move from other parts of Spain) each year between now and 2037, as well as ‘external’ migrants from other countries. Those new arrivals will gradually drop in number from the 45,000 expected this year to 25,700 in 2036.