The number of foreigners residing in Spain who achieved Spanish nationality in 2017 fell by 56% (to 66,498) with respect to the previous year, with Moroccans at the head, followed by people from eight Ibero-American countries, according to official data released today.
Of all the cases, the most frequent country by nationality of origin was Morocco, from which 17,082 people came (25.7% of the total), ahead of Ecuador, with 7,301 (11%); Bolivia, with 6,124 (9.2%); and Colombia, with 5,647 (8.5%), detail the figures of the National Institute of Statistics (INE).
And then came those from the Dominican Republic, with 4,107 (6.2%); Peru, with 3,224 (5%); Pakistan, with 1,708 (2.6%); Argentina, with 1,445 (2.2%); Cuba, with 1,429 (2.1%); and Brazil, with 1,294 (2%).
The INE explains that the country of birth most frequent in acquisitions of Spanish nationality was Spain, with 14,192 cases, 21.3% (mostly children), followed by Morocco, with 9,334 (14%).
Almost half of the petitioners are minor children of a Spanish father or mother and born in Spain.
The number of nationalities granted in one year has progressively fallen since 2013, when it was 225,793. In 2016 there were 150,944.
Among all the applications for nationality recognized in 2017, 62% was for residence and 38% for "option", a modality that has been given to practically all children under 20 years of age, according to the Spanish Nationality of Residents Acquisition Statistics. of the INE.
In order to obtain "nationality by residence" it is necessary to have resided in Spain for ten years in a legal manner, continuously and immediately prior to the request.
"Nationality by option" is a benefit that Spanish legislation offers to foreigners who are in certain conditions such as being or having been subject to the parental authority of a Spaniard, or to persons whose father or mother was Spanish and who was born in Spain. .
Of the 66,498 foreigners residing in Spain who acquired Spanish nationality last year, 22.7% (15,120) were minors between 0 and 9 years old; and 21.3% (14,164) were between 10 and 19 years old.
Afterwards, the most numerous group is that of 30 to 39 years, which were 18.3% (12,187); and the one from 40 to 49 years old, 18% (11,933).
And the least numerous were the groups between 20 and 29 years old, which accounted for 8.9% (5,910); those between 50 and 59 years old, with 8% (5,318), and those over 60, which were only 2.8% (1,866) of all those who achieved Spanish nationality.
By sex, there are hardly any differences, and 49.2% of those who acquired nationality were women and 50.8% were men.
And by region, Madrid (with 18,158 cases) and Catalonia (with 17,591) concentrated 54% of acquisitions of Spanish nationality in 2017, while Cantabria (with 336) and Extremadura (with 352) were where less were granted.
As of January 1, 2018, 46.7 million people lived in Spain, of which 10.1% were foreigners, according to official provisional data of the Continuous Register. Of the latter, 1.78 million came from the European Union, and 2.9 million from other countries.
The majority of registered people in Spain were Moroccans (769,050), followed by Romanians (673,017), British (240,934), Chinese (215,748), Italians (206,066), Colombians (165,608) and Ecuadorians (135,045).