The population of Spain has decreased for the first times since records began according to the Spanish National Statistics Institute.
The latest data show that the population of Spanish citizens grew slightly with 10 000 but at the same time the number of registered foreigners declined by 216 000 which has resulted in a net population fall of 206 000.
The economy of Spain has experienced a severe downturn during the period of the global financial crisis when the local house market collapsed.
Since then, matters have been made worse by the fact that the Spanish government has had to cut expenditure because of the crisis in the Eurozone.
The lack of opportunity in Spain with an unemployment rate of 26.6% has resulted in some foreign residents leaving the Country. Youth unemployment currently stands at 50%.
One of the main reasons for the flight of people is that Spanish is becoming less and less attractive destination due to the lack of working opportunities and record unemployment rates of approximately 26% and more than 50% among new graduates and young people.
The Spanish economy grew from mid-eighties to 2008 when many people from the Spanish-speaking world immigrated to Spain. Much of the growth was based on the construction boom.
Immigrants came from Latin America and also from Romania and Morocco. The number of registered foreign residents rose from less than 1m (924,000) in 2000 to nearly 6m (5.7m) in 2010.
Currently, many South Americans and many Romanians have left the country. In addition to that many young Spaniards are searching for opportunities abroad as well.
Albert Esteve of the Spanish National Statistics Institute said ‘There was extraordinary growth from 2000 to 2009 which is reversing quickly due to the economic crisis. Spain is less attractive because there are no jobs’.
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