[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Languages
Last Updated: Thursday, 10 February, 2005, 16:57 GMT
Dramatic rise in Spain immigrants
By Danny Wood
BBC News, Madrid

Immigrants in Spain
Spain has launched an amnesty for 800,000 immigrants
Spain's National Institute for Statistics has released preliminary figures that show a dramatic increase in the country's immigrant population.

The number of foreigners living in Spain has nearly quadrupled over the last five years.

No other European country has experienced such a rapid rise in its number of immigrants.

In 2000, there were about 900,000 immigrants registered as living in Spain. Now there are 3.5 million.

It is an increase of almost 400%, and that number could be much higher.

Amnesty

Hundreds of thousands of Europeans and illegal immigrants living here do not register with the authorities. But it is the increase that is dramatic, not the actual number of foreigners living here.

Officially, immigrants now represent 8% of the country's population of nearly 44m people. That percentage is nothing out of the ordinary in the European Union.

About 10% of Germany's population for example consists of immigrants. The release of these figures comes as leading think-tanks call for a new policy towards immigration.

Earlier this week, Spain's government started the process of granting legal amnesty to up to 800,000 undocumented immigrants.


SEE ALSO:
Migrants flock to Canaries
26 Oct 04 |  Europe
EU split over migrant camp plan
18 Oct 04 |  Europe
Analysis: Migrant boats test EU
27 Aug 04 |  Europe
Policing Spain's southern coast
18 May 04 |  Africa


RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific