Foreign workers at a construction site in Malaga. SUR
One third of all foreign workers in Andalucía are found in Malaga

One third of all foreign workers in Andalucía are found in Malaga

The number of Social Security affiliates from other countries exceeds 100,000 in the province and stands at 82% more than ten years ago

Cristina Vallejo


Friday, 22 September 2023, 11:29

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At the end of August, Malaga province had 103,301 foreigners affiliated to the national Social Security system. It is the highest figure in all of Andalucía. Quite a way behind is Almeria, with 64,778. In fact, one in every three foreign employees in the region (292,952 at the last count) as a whole works in Malaga. Furthermore, at the national level, Malaga is the sixth province with the most workers from outside Spain, behind Madrid, where there are more than half a million; Barcelona, ​where there are just over 460,000; as well as Valencia and Alicante, provinces in which the number easily exceeds 100,000.

Malaga is also the Andalusian province in which the number of foreign Social Security affiliates has grown the most in the last decade. Specifically, at the end of last month they had increased by almost 82% compared to 2013. In this case, Malaga is followed, within Andalucía, by Cordoba, Seville and Almeria, where the growth has been around 70% in the same period, a percentage similar to the increase registered in the Andalucía region as a whole. In all these cases the increase is higher than Spain as a whole, where the increase in those registered in the Social Security system has been 66%, reaching 2.64 million.

In a national comparison, Malaga is the seventh province in which workers from other countries have increased the most since 2013.


But what is the profile of foreign people who work in Malaga like? According to statistics from the Ministry of Inclusion, Social Security and Migration, the majority - around 64% - are non-EU citizens. Furthermore, these are also the ones that have increased the most in the last ten years in the province: their presence has increased more than doubled by 113%. This is an increase that exceeds that of Spain as a whole, where the increase in the number of workers from outside the European Union has been close to 80%. But Malaga, within Andalucía, is beaten by Huelva, with a growth of more than 150% - reaching almost 16,000 Social Security affiliates from outside the EU, a percentage only surpassed nationally by Ourense.

The majority of foreigners who work in Malaga, around 66,500, are affiliated with the general Social Security sector. It is a figure that practically doubles the number of those registered ten years earlier. The second most important group is the one that is integrated into the special sector for self-employed workers: at the end of August there were close to 30,000, compared to around 14,800 ten years earlier. The third most important group is foreigners enrolled in the special system for domestic employees, with 5,310 people affiliated, a figure that in this case is lower than that of a decade earlier, when there were 7,313. Meanwhile, in the agricultural sector there are 1,512 people and in the maritime sector, both self-employed and employed, there are around 158 people.

Although during the last decade Malaga has shown great dynamism in attracting workers from other countries, in the last twelve months, the growth in the number of foreign affiliates to Social Security is limited to 10% in the province, practically in line with the increase registered in Spain as a whole.

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