There are approximately 2.6 million foreigners living throughout Spain with a resident's card (valid from 30 September 2005), that is to say 6 percent of the total Spanish population. This means that in the first nine months of his year a total of 619'723 foreigners have achieved legal status in Spain, almost twice the amount experienced during 2004. It is necessary to distinguish between EU residents, of which there are 536'492 living in Spain, and immigrants, of which there are 1'841'533.
This year the number of immigrants living in Spain has grown considerably thanks to the legalisation process which the government initiated between February and May, and which many applied for. By nationalities, it is the Moroccans who lead the table for living in Spain, followed by Ecuadorians, Colombians, Romanians and British.
However, in terms of the biggest population increases this year, people from Ecuador are at the top, followed by Romania, Morocco, Colombia, Bolivia and Argentina.
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