The Canary Islands gain 3,468 inhabitants in the second year of the pandemic despite the fall in foreigners

Archive image of Triana street in the capital of Gran Canaria / C7

The archipelago closed 2021 with 2,176,412 people, of which 13.2% are foreigners. Italians make up 17.3% of the foreign population of the islands

Louisa del Rosario

The Canary Islands closed 2021 with 2,176,412 inhabitants, which represents
an increase of 0.2% of its population with respect to the previous year. Specifically 3,468 people. However, foreign citizenship decreased by 0.1%. These are the data released yesterday by the
National Institute of Statistics (INE) in an advance of the data of the continuous register.

With these figures the archipelago becomes
the eighth most populated community in Spain, behind Andalusia, which exceeds 8.4 million inhabitants, Catalonia, with 7.7 million, Madrid, with 6.7, Valencia, with five million, Galicia, with 2.7 million inhabitants, Castilla and León and the Basque Country with 2.2 and 2.3 respectively.


  • Eighth
    The archipelago is the fourth most populous community in the country with an increase of 0.2% last year.

  • 368 migrants
    It is the number of foreign population that the islands lost last year, 0.1%

  • In equal parts
    142,280 foreigners live in Las Palmas and 145,178 in the province of Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

  • 18.21%
    273,9889 people from Italy live in Spain, of which 18.21% live in the Canary Islands.

According to this statistic, which the INE warns contains provisional figures,
As of January 1, 2022, 287,458 foreigners lived in the Canary Islands, which represents 13.2% of the total population of the islands.

The variation with respect to the previous year is that
the foreign presence was reduced by 0.1%, specifically 368 people. However, the population in the islands grew by 0.2%, which indicates that this increase was due to internal immigration.

At the national level, however, the statistics are just the opposite.. The national population is reduced by 21,920 people, 0.1%, and foreign citizenship registered in Spain increases by 59,010 people, 1.15%.

Presence on the islands by nationalities

The 287,458 foreigners who live in the Canary Islands are divided practically in half between the two provinces.
142,280 are registered in Las Palmas and the rest -145,178- in Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

The nationality with the most presence on the islands is, by far, the Italiana. 49,879 people from Italy live in the archipelago, which represents 17.3% of the foreign population in the Canary Islands. From Italy comes 5% of the foreign population in Spain, that is, 273,889 people, being
the fifth nationality with more representation in the national group. Of them, 18.21% live in the Canary Islands. Last year, in addition, it was the second nationality that grew the most in the country as a whole with 16,633 more registered citizens compared to the previous year.

Followed by the native of
United Kingdom, with 29,582 British men and women on the islands, 10.2% of all migrants. Y
the third country with the highest representation is Germany. 25,286 Germans live in the archipelago, people, 8.7% of the total foreign population of the islands.

Only the population of these three nationalities in the Canary Islands: Italian, British and German, represents 36.4% -104,747- of the foreigners registered in the archipelago.

Behind them stand out Venezuela, with 19,033 people, Morocco, from there come 18,345 people registered on the islands, Colombia, with 16,557 and Cuba, with about 14,000.

More of Venezuela in Tenerife and more of Morocco in Las Palmas

But just as the foreign population is distributed in a similar way between both provinces, the same does not happen when it comes to nationality, at least with some.
The Moroccan population on the islands lives mostly in the eastern province -14,054 in Las Palmas compared to 4,291 in Santa Cruz de Tenerife-. According to the INE, foreigners from this country who live in Spain have an average age of 32 years.

With the Venezuelan population, the opposite happens and they choose to live on the islands in the western province. Thus, 14,393 settled in Santa Cruz de Tenerife while 4,640 did so in Las Palmas.

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