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Immigrant numbers in Spain fall

Thu 27th May 2010

The number of non-EU residents moving to Spain has declined in line with the economic recession, with South Americanís showing the biggest fall.

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During 2009 there were over 137,000 new applications for residency cards from non-EU nationals, and a total of 2,573,347, which was a 5.6% increase on 2008. In 2005 the number of non-EU residency cards issued increased by more than 50%.

The figures were released by the Ministry for Employment and Immigration, and reveal how the total number of some nationalities has fallen due to some people returning to their home countries due to the recession. It is reported that there are now 3,947 fewer Ecuadorians than in 2008, and 5,463 fewer Argentinans.

However, the number of EU nationals who have been granted residency in Spain continued to grow last year, with 200,466 more applications.

British citizens applying for residency increased by 13,093 over the course of 2009, the majority of them retired.

Immigrants aged over 65 as a whole represent just 3.8% the population in Spain, however, of that number the British make up 27%.