SPAIN’S registered foreign population has increased for the first time since 2011.
The number of registered foreigners grew by 3.2 per cent in 2017, according to a National Institute of Statistics (INE) study released on Tuesday.
Figures – which are yet to be confirmed – show the registered foreign population is now 4,719,418 people, compared to 4,572,807 last year.
The increase balances out a 20,000 fall in registered Spanish nationals. It is first time the Spanish population has fallen in 20 years.
Overall, Spain´s total population grew slightly by 0.3 per cent in 2017, to 46,698,569 people.
This marks a slim recovery in Spain´s population, which fell for four years in row until 2016.
Statistics show the majority of registered immigrants were not from the European Union (EU).
Only 37.7 per cent (1,780,698) came from the EU, while 59.5 per cent (2,938,720) arrived from outside its borders.
This proportion has not budged much for a decade, shows the study.
Most non-EU registered migrants are Moroccans (769,050) or Romanians (673,017).
The British come a distant third at 240,934 registered residents.
However, the largest growth in immigrants per nationality are Venezuelans, Colombians and Hondurans, in 2016.
The average age of immigrants is 43.1 years old. Brits and Germans a pushing that figure upwards, whereas, Hondurans (30.4) and Moroccans (30.8) pull the average down.
The locations with the highest proportion of foreigners compared to Spaniards are the Balearic Islands (17.1 per cent) and Melilla (15.6 per cent), Cataluña (14.2 per cent) and Murcia (13.7 per cent).