Forecasts by the National Statistics Institute (INE) suggest that the foreign population in the Balearics will almost double over the next fifteen years to 545,868; the 2018 figure is 285,989. The Spanish population, on the other hand, will stagnate; the prediction is that it will in fact fall by 847.
The INE's projections are based on there being an average of 20,000 more foreign residents per year until 2033. The total population of the Balearics will therefore rise to 1,425,636 from the current 1,166,603. This would represent the highest population increase of any region in Spain, a 22% difference that is calculated to be four times more than the national average. The Balearic population would, in the process, surpass that of Aragon.
Eight regions, predicts the INE, will experience reductions in population - Aragon, Asturias, Cantabria, Castile-La Mancha, Castile-Leon, Extremadura, Galicia and La Rioja. The greatest decrease, 8.6%, is forecast for Castile-Leon.
The increase in foreign residents, it is argued, will have positive consequences in terms of the ratio of births to deaths. More births than deaths will be a factor in explaining the rising population. There will also be more younger people, thus reducing a general trend towards ageing populations. The Balearics and the Canaries are, on balance, the two regions where there are the highest rates of immigration versus emigration.
For Spain as a whole, the INE forecasts that the population in 2033 will be some 49 million. At present it is 46.6 million.