There are almost five million foreigners who are legally resident in Spain, of which 2,110,000 are from non-European countries (the lowest number since 2006 when the two million barrier was crossed for the first time) and 2.8 million from the European Union, a figure which is on the increase.

By nationality, the two largest foreign resident groups are Romanian (967,000) and Moroccans (764,000). UK residents are third but they are some distance behind with 280,000. The next three positions are occupied by Italians, Chinese and Bulgarians. By contrast with UK residents, there are only 150,000 from Germany.

In the Balearics, the number of non-EU residents had fallen by 4% at the time the calculations were made at the end of June and which made comparisons with December last year. Of increases in EU residents, there were 2% rises in each of Andalusia, Catalonia and the Canary Islands.

The two regions of the country with the highest concentrations of foreign residents are Catalonia and the community of Madrid.
The former has more than one million foreigners, but of these there are proportionally more non-EU residents (almost 600,000) than in Madrid, where 440,000 of its almost 800,000 foreigners are from the EU. Some 30% more foreign residents are distributed across Alicante, Valencia, Malaga, Murcia, Almeria, Gerona and the Balearics, where there is 4.5%.

There are notable regional differences by nationality, and so 50% of UK foreign residents are in Alicante, Malaga and the Balearics, while 44% of Germans are in Barcelona, Las Palmas and the Balearics.