THE Balearics is currently the region of Spain with the fourth highest life expectancy rate, the National Institute of Statistics (INE) reported yesterday.

People living in the Islands can now expect to live an average of 81 years, an age which has risen four years between 1991 and 2007.
The highest life expectancy rates in the country, said the INE are in the regions of Madrid and Navarre where citizens are living an average of 82 years. The national average is the same as in the Balearics, 81 years.

The difference between the sexes in terms of death rates remains the same, however, with women expecting to live on average six years longer than men.
According to the INE, mortality rates have tended to fall in all age groups with the most significant results seen amongst older people. But throughout the 1990s, reduction in death rates in young adults had been falling more slowly, above all in the 18 to 35 age group, particularly amongst men.

Since 1991, life expectancy for both women and men aged 65 has risen by 2.4 and 2.1 percent respectively.