The new council census caused a shock this week with a big dip in the number of German and British residents. At a time when the island welcomes a record number of foreign tourists the number of foreign residents is falling. Now, I am not going to dismiss what are official figures but what I do believe, though, is that some foreign residents have simply disappeared on the island because of the latest crackdown by the tax authorities. The fact that foreign residents living legally on the island had to declare their worldwide assets to the Spanish tax authorities caused some concern. It led to a substantial number of expats moving away from the island but also there were those who simply asked for their names to be deleted from the census because they were either moving away or were no longer going to be full-time residents (allegedly).

There has always been a big difference between the number of foreign residents who were "in the system" and those who are not. In fact, it is estimated that one million Britons live in Spain but only 250,000 are officially registered. However, all this could change and very soon thanks to Brexit. All those Britons who are legally residing in the Balearics will have few problems when Britain leaves the European Union, but those who are not legal (and are not registered on the official census) could face a paperwork nightmare. The official view from both the Spanish and British government is that it is better to be legal. I believe that the number of British residents has declined, but it is not as big as the official figures suggest.


To be able to write a comment, you have to be registered and be logged in.

* Mandatory fields

Richard Pearson / Hace over 4 years

A local paper is claiming that since 2012, around 41.000 EU citizens ( not including those from Norway and Switzerland ) have left these shores. The main cause quoted as being the new tax laws that were introduced around that time.


Richard Pearson / Hace over 4 years

My opinion is that the figures quoted could be misleading. They presumably include young adults, most of whom keep their parents nationality. The exception to this rule are those born to South American, North African and Eastern Europeans who become Spanish citizens if born here. Therefore I would reckon that the figure mentioned for Moroccans is way below the real figure of people who consider themselves to belong to that culture and are only Spanish, and therefore European, for administrative sake.


Gary / Hace over 4 years

The British & Germans have left and are leaving, but are replaced by persons from new countries in Europe. It is called CHANGE which is healthy.

It is not easy to earn a self employed income in Spain.


S. / Hace over 4 years

Addendum. I left in 2000 after 10 great years on the Island, of which I adore.. Alas , I can only Holiday now, but on several times per. year.


S. / Hace over 4 years

I do know of many British people who have left, or been forced to leave , when their self employed businesses became bankrupt. Many caused from the greedy Hoteliers ALL INCLUSIVE policy. Several have left the Island, because of the fall in the pound, and their pensions can no longer support their living requirements. Perhaps this " Exodus " of many nationalities is down to the afore mentioned factors. Or, that the final " Brexit " regulations could impact badly on their lives.