Staff Reporter

FIVE Majorcan towns, Campanet, Costitx, Montuiri, Palma and Selva, have seen their population drop in comparison with 2004.
This is according to figures taken from the municipal census as at January 1 2006, and published by the National Institute for Statistics (INE).
All other towns grew in population, and it must be pointed out that the towns which lost population, only lost a few residents.
Campanet, for example, lost just eight residents; Costitx 28 (lowering its population from 1'004 to 976, some 2.8 percent); Montuiri 18; Palma 725; and Selva just two.

In the case of Palma the decrease in population is barely noticeable.
On January 1 2005 the city had 375'773 residents and on January 1 2006, 375'048, scarcely a 0.2 percent reduction.
With the “official” limit of a million inhabitants in the Balearics already exceeded, it must be pointed out that the biggest percentage increases in population on the islands have been on Ibiza and Formentera.

Formentera has grown by 6 percent and Ibiza by 2.5 percent.
Minorca's population has increased by 2 percent and Majorca trails them with an increase of just 1.7 percent.
The average population growth in the Balearics is 1.8 percent.
This is the fifth largest growth of all the autonomous regions, equal to La Rioja and behind Murcia (with 2.6 percent), Valencia (with 2.4 percent) and Castilla-La Mancha and Cataluña (both with 2 percent).

The autonomous town of Melilla also beats the Balearics with a 2.1 percent growth in its population.
The population growth in the Balearics is slowing down, as the figures for 2004 made the region the third highest in Spain with a growth of 2.94 percent, only exceeded by Valencia with 3.28 percent and Murcia with 3.17 percent.

After Palma, the most populated municipality is Calvia, with 45'284 inhabitants.
The third is Ibiza with 42'884 residents, and the fourth is Manacor with 37'165 inhabitants.
Llucmajor, in fifth position with 31'381 residents, exceeds Mahon, Ciutadella and Inca, all of which have not yet exceeded 28'000 inhabitants.
Mahon (the capital of Minorca) has 27'893 inhabitants, while Ciutadella has 27'468, a difference of just 425 people.
Banyalbufar and Deya are also curious cases. In 2004 Banyalbufar lost some inhabitants, but in 2005 it only lost 4. Deya had no changes to its municipal register and remained steady at 708.

Normally, towns which lose population are those which have few inhabitants. However, in 2005 Palma was added to the group of those who lost residents.
Palma has lost 725 inhabitants, which is a total reduction in its population of 0.2 percent.
At the moment, it does not “officially” have 400'000 residents.
Palma has suffered a small reduction in population, but it must be remembered that the towns surrounding it have grown in population which, experts say, demonstrates the high cost of living in Palma.

On the other hand, Ibiza and Formentera are the islands which have grown most in population in the Balearics.
Formentera has increased its population by some 6 percent, and Ibiza by 2.5 percent.
Minorca has grown by 2 percent and Majorca has had least increase with 1.7 percent.
The provinces around Palma are increasing their population at a great rate.
Marratxi, for example, has grown by 5.3 percent and Andratx by 5 percent.
Calvia has grown by 4.1 percent, while Llucmajor has grown by 4.9 percent.
Manacor has had a rise of 3.5 percent.


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