Spain's powerful world empire of the 16th and 17th centuries ultimately yielded command of the seas to England. Subsequent failure to embrace the mercantile and industrial revolutions caused the country to fall behind Britain, France, and Germany in economic and political power. Spain remained neutral in World War I and II but suffered through a devastating civil war (1936-39). A peaceful transition to democracy following the death of dictator Francisco FRANCO in 1975, and rapid economic modernization (Spain joined the EU in 1986) gave Spain a dynamic and rapidly growing economy and made it a global champion of freedom and human rights. More recently the government has focused on measures to reverse a severe economic recession that began in mid-2008. Austerity measures implemented to reduce a large budget deficit and reassure foreign investors have led to one of the highest unemployment rates in Europe. Spain assumed a nonpermanent seat on the UN Security Council for the 2015-16 term.



Southwestern Europe, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, North Atlantic Ocean, Bay of Biscay, and Pyrenees Mountains; southwest of France

Geographic coordinates

40 00 N, 4 00 W

Map references



total: 505,370 sq km
land: 498,980 sq km
water: 6,390 sq km
note: there are two autonomous cities - Ceuta and Melilla - and 17 autonomous communities including Balearic Islands and Canary Islands, and three small Spanish possessions off the coast of Morocco - Islas Chafarinas, Penon de Alhucemas, and Penon de Velez de la Gomera

Area - comparative

almost five times the size of Kentucky; slightly more than twice the size of Oregon

Land boundaries

total: 1,952.7 km
border countries (5): Andorra 63 km, France 646 km, Gibraltar 1.2 km, Portugal 1,224 km, Morocco (Ceuta) 8 km, Morocco (Melilla) 10.5 km
note: an additional 75-meter border segment exists between Morocco and the Spanish exclave of Penon de Velez de la Gomera


4,964 km

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm (applies only to the Atlantic Ocean)


temperate; clear, hot summers in interior, more moderate and cloudy along coast; cloudy, cold winters in interior, partly cloudy and cool along coast


large, flat to dissected plateau surrounded by rugged hills; Pyrenees Mountains in north


mean elevation: 660 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Pico de Teide (Tenerife) on Canary Islands 3,718 m

Natural resources

coal, lignite, iron ore, copper, lead, zinc, uranium, tungsten, mercury, pyrites, magnesite, fluorspar, gypsum, sepiolite, kaolin, potash, hydropower, arable land

Land use

agricultural land: 54.1%
arable land 24.9%; permanent crops 9.1%; permanent pasture 20.1%
forest: 36.8%
other: 9.1% (2011 est.)

Irrigated land

38,000 sq km (2012)

Natural hazards

periodic droughts, occasional flooding
volcanism: volcanic activity in the Canary Islands, located off Africa's northwest coast; Teide (elev. 3,715 m) has been deemed a Decade Volcano by the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior, worthy of study due to its explosive history and close proximity to human populations; La Palma (elev. 2,426 m), which last erupted in 1971, is the most active of the Canary Islands volcanoes; Lanzarote is the only other historically active volcano

Environment - current issues

pollution of the Mediterranean Sea from raw sewage and effluents from the offshore production of oil and gas; water quality and quantity nationwide; air pollution; deforestation; desertification

Environment - international agreements

party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants

Geography - note

strategic location along approaches to Strait of Gibraltar; Spain controls a number of territories in northern Morocco including the enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla, and the islands of Penon de Velez de la Gomera, Penon de Alhucemas, and Islas Chafarinas

People and Society


48,563,476 (July 2016 est.)


noun: Spaniard(s)
adjective: Spanish

Ethnic groups

composite of Mediterranean and Nordic types


Castilian Spanish (official nationwide) 74%, Catalan (official in Catalonia, the Balearic Islands, and the Valencian Community (where it is known as Valencian)) 17%, Galician (official in Galicia) 7%, Basque (official in the Basque Country and in the Basque-speaking area of Navarre) 2%, Aranese (official in the northwest corner of Catalonia (Vall d'Aran) along with Catalan; <5,000 speakers)
note: Aragonese, Aranese Asturian, Basque, Calo, Catalan, Galician, and Valencian are recognized as regional languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages


Roman Catholic 94%, other 6%

Age structure

0-14 years: 15.43% (male 3,854,687/female 3,638,288)
15-24 years: 9.56% (male 2,400,188/female 2,243,311)
25-54 years: 45.24% (male 11,200,786/female 10,771,652)
55-64 years: 11.91% (male 2,820,933/female 2,963,050)
65 years and over: 17.85% (male 3,700,832/female 4,969,749) (2016 est.)

Dependency ratios

total dependency ratio: 50.8%
youth dependency ratio: 22.4%
elderly dependency ratio: 28.3%
potential support ratio: 3.5% (2015 est.)

Median age

total: 42.3 years
male: 41.2 years
female: 43.6 years (2016 est.)

Population growth rate

0.84% (2016 est.)

Birth rate

9.4 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)

Death rate

9.1 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)

Net migration rate

8 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)

Population distribution

with the notable exception of Madrid, Sevilla, and Zaragoza, the largest urban agglomerations are found along the Mediterranean and Atlantic coasts; numerous smaller cities are spread throughout the interior reflecting Spain's agrarian heritage; dense settlement is found around the capital of Madrid, as well as the port city of Barcelona


urban population: 79.6% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: 0.52% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major urban areas - population

MADRID (capital) 6.199 million; Barcelona 5.258 million; Valencia 810,000 (2015)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.07 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.74 male(s)/female
total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2016 est.)

Maternal mortality rate

5 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)

Infant mortality rate

total: 3.3 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 3.6 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 2.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 81.7 years
male: 78.7 years
female: 84.9 years (2016 est.)

Total fertility rate

1.49 children born/woman (2016 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

65.7% (2006)

Health expenditures

9% of GDP (2014)

Physicians density

4.95 physicians/1,000 population (2013)

Hospital bed density

3.1 beds/1,000 population (2011)

Drinking water source

urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2015 est.)

Sanitation facility access

urban: 99.8% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 99.9% of population
urban: 0.2% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0.1% of population (2015 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate

0.39% (2015 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS

148,900 (2015 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths

1,200 (2015 est.)

Obesity - adult prevalence rate

26.5% (2014)

Education expenditures

4.3% of GDP (2013)


definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 98.1%
male: 98.7%
female: 97.5% (2015 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)

total: 18 years
male: 17 years
female: 18 years (2014)

Mother's mean age at first birth

29.8 (2010 est.)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24

total: 53.2%
male: 53.4%
female: 52.9% (2014 est.)


Country name

conventional long form: Kingdom of Spain
conventional short form: Spain
local long form: Reino de Espana
local short form: Espana
etymology: derivation of the name "Espana" is uncertain, but may come from the Phoenician term "span," related to the word "spy," meaning "to forge metals," so, "i-spn-ya" would mean "place where metals are forged"; the ancient Phoenicians long exploited the Iberian Peninsula for its mineral wealth

Government type

parliamentary constitutional monarchy


name: Madrid
geographic coordinates: 40 24 N, 3 41 W
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
note: Spain has two time zones including the Canary Islands

Administrative divisions

17 semi-autonomous communities (comunidades autonomas, singular - comunidad autonoma) and 2 autonomous cities* (ciudades autonomas, singular - ciudad autonoma); Andalucia; Aragon; Asturias; Canarias (Canary Islands); Cantabria; Castilla-La Mancha; Castilla-Leon; Cataluna (Castilian), Catalunya (Catalan), Catalonha (Aranese) [Catalonia]; Ceuta*; Comunidad Valenciana (Castilian), Comunitat Valenciana (Valencian) [Valencian Community]; Extremadura; Galicia; Illes Baleares (Balearic Islands); La Rioja; Madrid; Melilla*; Murcia; Navarra (Castilian), Nafarroa (Basque) [Navarre]; Pais Vasco (Castilian), Euskadi (Basque) [Basque Country]
note: the autonomous cities of Ceuta and Melilla plus three small islands of Islas Chafarinas, Penon de Alhucemas, and Penon de Velez de la Gomera, administered directly by the Spanish central government, are all along the coast of Morocco and are collectively referred to as Places of Sovereignty (Plazas de Soberania)


1492; the Iberian peninsula was characterized by a variety of independent kingdoms prior to the Muslim occupation that began in the early 8th century A.D. and lasted nearly seven centuries; the small Christian redoubts of the north began the reconquest almost immediately, culminating in the seizure of Granada in 1492; this event completed the unification of several kingdoms and is traditionally considered the forging of present-day Spain

National holiday

National Day, 12 October (1492); year when Columbus first set foot in the Americas


history: previous 1812; latest approved by the General Courts 31 October 1978, passed by referendum 6 December 1978, signed by the king 27 December 1978, effective 29 December 1978
amendments: proposed by the government, by the General Courts (the Congress or the Senate), or by the self-governing communities submitted through the government; passage requires three-fifths majority vote by both houses and passage by referendum if required by one-tenth of the members of either house within 15 days of passage; proposals disapproved by both houses are submitted to a joint committee, which submits an agreed upon text for another vote; passage requires two-thirds vote in Congress and simple majority vote in the Senate; amended 1992, 2007, 2011 (2016)

Legal system

civil law system with regional variations

International law organization participation

accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction


citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Spain
dual citizenship recognized: only with select Latin American countries
residency requirement for naturalization: 10 years for persons with no ties to Spain


18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: King FELIPE VI (since 19 June 2014); Heir Apparent Princess LEONOR, Princess of Asturias, daughter of the monarch, born 31 October 2005
head of government: President of the Government or Acting Prime Minister Mariano RAJOY (since 20 December 2011); Vice President (and Minister of the President's Office) Soraya SAENZ DE SANTAMARIA (since 22 December 2011)
cabinet: Council of Ministers designated by the president
elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; following legislative elections, the monarch usually proposes the leader of the party or coalition with the largest majority of seats as president, who is then indirectly elected by the Congress of Deputies; election last held on 20 December 2015; vice president and Council of Ministers appointed by the president; note - because no party received a majority of the votes in both houses, and because the leaders of the parties with the most votes were unable to form a coalition to form a majority, new elections were held on 26 June 2016
election results: percent of National Assembly vote - NA
note: there is also a Council of State that is the supreme consultative organ of the government, but its recommendations are non-binding

Legislative branch

description: bicameral General Courts or Las Cortes Generales consists of the Senate or Senado (266 seats as of 2013; 208 members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by simple majority vote and 58 appointed by the regional legislatures; members serve 4-year terms) and the Congress of Deputies or Congreso de los Diputados (350 seats; 348 members directly elected in 50 multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote and 2 directly elected from the North African Ceuta and Melilla enclaves by simple majority vote; members serve 4-year terms or until the government is dissolved)
elections: Senate - last held on 26 June 2016 (next to be held 26 June 2016); Congress of Deputies - last held on 20 December 2015 (next to be held no later than 26 June 2020); note - the four main parties were unable to form a government so a second election was held six months later
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PP 151, PSOE 63, Podemos 23, ERC 12, EAJ/PNV 6, CDC 4, other 7; Congress of Deputies - percent of vote by party - PP 33.0%, PSOE 22.7%, Podemos 21.1%, C's 13.0%, ERC-CatSi 2.6%, CDC 2.0%, EAJ/PNV 1.2%, other 4.4%; seats by party - PP 137, PSOE 85, Podemos 71, C's 32, ERC-CatSi 9, CDC 8, EAJ/PNV 5, other 3

Judicial branch

highest court(s): Supreme Court or Tribunal Supremo (consists of the court president and organized into the Civil Room with a president and 9 judges, the Penal Room with a president and 14 judges, the Administrative Room with a president and 32 judges, the Social Room with a president and 12 judges, and the Military Room with a president and 7 judges); Constitutional Court or Tribunal Constitucional de Espana (consists of 12 judges)
judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court judges appointed by the monarch from candidates proposed by the General Council of the Judiciary Power, a 20-member governing board chaired by the monarch that includes presidential appointees, and lawyers and jurists confirmed by the National Assembly; judges can serve until age 70; Constitutional Court judges nominated by the National Assembly, executive branch, and the General Council of the Judiciary, and appointed by the monarch for 9-year terms
subordinate courts: National High Court; High Courts of Justice (in each of the autonomous communities); provincial courts; courts of first instance

Political parties and leaders

Amaiur [Xabier ERREKONDO] (a separatist political coalition that advocates Basque independence from Spain)
Asturias Forum or FAC [Cristina COTO]
Basque Country Unite (Euskal Herria Bildu) or EH Bildu [Pello URIZAR] (coalition of 4 Basque pro-independence parties)
Basque Nationalist Party or PNV or EAJ [Andoni ORTUZAR]
Canarian Coalition or CC [Claudina MORALES Rodriguez] (coalition of five parties)
Canarian Nationalist Party or PNC [Juan Manuel GARCIA Ramos]
Catalan Agreement of Progress (Entesa Catalonia de Progress) or ECP [Carles BONET i Reves] (Senate coalition of Catalan parties - PSC, ERC, ICV, EUA)
Change or Cambio-Aldaketa
Ciudadamos Party or C's [Albert RIVERA]
Democracy and Freedom or DiL [Francesc HOMS Molist] (2015 merger of Cemocratic Convergence of Catalonia or CDC, Democrats of Catalonia, Reagrupament)
Democratic Union of Catalonia or UDC [Josep Maria PELEGRIA]
Galician Nationalist Bloc or BNG [Ana PONTON Mondelo]
Gomera Socialist Group or ASG
Initiative for Catalonia Greens or ICV [Joan HERRERA i Torres and Dolors CAMATS]
Podemos [Pablo IGLESIAS Turrion]
Popular Party or PP [Mariano RAJOY Brey]
Republican Left of Catalonia or ERC [Oriol JUNQUERAS i Vies]
Spanish Socialist Workers Party or PSOE [interim leader Javier FERNANDEZ]
Union of People of Navarra or UPN [Javier ESPARZA]
Union, Progress and Democracy or UPyD [Gorka MAEIRO]
United Left or IU [Alberto GARZON] (a coalition of parties including the Communist Party of Spain or PCE and other small parties; ran as Popular Unity or UP in 2015 election)
Yes to the Future or Geroa Bai [Koldo MARTINEZ] (a coalition of four Navarran parties)

Political pressure groups and leaders

Association for Victims of Terrorism or AVT (grassroots organization devoted primarily to supporting victims of the Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) terrorist organization)
Catholic Church
Socialist General Union of Workers or UGT (includes the smaller independent Workers Syndical Union or USO)
Trade Union Confederation of Workers' Commissions or CC.OO.
Spanish Confederation of Employers' Organizations or CEOE
other: business and landowning interests; free labor unions (authorized in April 1977); university students

International organization participation

ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Arctic Council (observer), Australia Group, BCIE, BIS, CAN (observer), CBSS (observer), CD, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EITI (implementing country), EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAIA (observer), MIGA, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Pacific Alliance (observer), Paris Club, PCA, PIF (partner), Schengen Convention, SELEC (observer), SICA (observer), UN, UN Security Council (temporary), UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, Union Latina, UNOCI, UNRWA, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US

chief of mission: Ambassador Ramon GIL-CASARES Satrustegui (since 5 June 2012)
chancery: 2375 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20037
telephone: [1] (202) 452-0100, 728-2340
FAX: [1] (202) 833-5670
consulate(s) general: Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco, San Juan (Puerto Rico)
consulate(s): Kansas City (MO)

Diplomatic representation from the US

chief of mission: Ambassador James COSTOS (since 24 September 2013); note - also accredited to Andorra
embassy: Serrano 75, 28006 Madrid
mailing address: PSC 61, APO AE 09642
telephone: [34] (91) 587-2200
FAX: [34] (91) 587-2303
consulate(s) general: Barcelona

Flag description

three horizontal bands of red (top), yellow (double width), and red with the national coat of arms on the hoist side of the yellow band; the coat of arms is quartered to display the emblems of the traditional kingdoms of Spain (clockwise from upper left, Castile, Leon, Navarre, and Aragon) while Granada is represented by the stylized pomegranate at the bottom of the shield; the arms are framed by two columns representing the Pillars of Hercules, which are the two promontories (Gibraltar and Ceuta) on either side of the eastern end of the Strait of Gibraltar; the red scroll across the two columns bears the imperial motto of "Plus Ultra" (further beyond) referring to Spanish lands beyond Europe; the triband arrangement with the center stripe twice the width of the outer dates to the 18th century
note: the red and yellow colors are related to those of the oldest Spanish kingdoms: Aragon, Castile, Leon, and Navarre

National symbol(s)

Pillars of Hercules; national colors: red, yellow

National anthem

name: "Himno Nacional Espanol" (National Anthem of Spain)
lyrics/music: no lyrics/unknown
note: officially in use between 1770 and 1931, restored in 1939; the Spanish anthem is the first anthem to be officially adopted, but it has no lyrics; in the years prior to 1931 it became known as "Marcha Real" (The Royal March); it first appeared in a 1761 military bugle call book and was replaced by "Himno de Riego" in the years between 1931 and 1939; the long version of the anthem is used for the king, while the short version is used for the prince, prime minister, and occasions such as sporting events


Economy - overview

After experiencing a prolonged recession in the wake of the global financial crisis that began in 2008, in 2016 Spain marked the third full year of positive economic growth in nine years, largely due to increased private consumption. At the onset of the f

Until 2014, credit contraction in the private sector, fiscal austerity, and high unemployment weighed on domestic consumption and investment. The unemployment rate rose from a low of about 8% in 2007 to more than 26% in 2013, but labor reforms prompted a

Exports were resilient throughout the economic downturn and helped to bring Spain's current account into surplus in 2013 for the first time since 1986, where it remained in 2014-16. Rising labor productivity and an internal devaluation resulting from mode

The government's efforts to implement labor, pension, healthcare, tax, and education reforms - aimed at supporting investor sentiment - have become overshadowed by political activity in 2015 in anticipation of the national parliamentary elections in Decem

GDP (purchasing power parity)

$1.69 trillion (2016 est.)
$1.64 trillion (2015 est.)
$1.589 trillion (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars

GDP (official exchange rate)

$1.252 trillion (2015 est.)

GDP - real growth rate

3.1% (2016 est.)
3.2% (2015 est.)
1.4% (2014 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP)

$36,500 (2016 est.)
$35,300 (2015 est.)
$34,200 (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars

Gross national saving

22.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
22.1% of GDP (2015 est.)
20.8% of GDP (2014 est.)

GDP - composition, by end use

household consumption: 57.2%
government consumption: 19%
investment in fixed capital: 20.8%
investment in inventories: 0.1%
exports of goods and services: 32.2%
imports of goods and services: -29.3% (2016 est.)

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 2.5%
industry: 22.4%
services: 75.1% (2016 est.)

Agriculture - products

grain, vegetables, olives, wine grapes, sugar beets, citrus; beef, pork, poultry, dairy products; fish


textiles and apparel (including footwear), food and beverages, metals and metal manufactures, chemicals, shipbuilding, automobiles, machine tools, tourism, clay and refractory products, footwear, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment

Industrial production growth rate

2% (2016 est.)

Labor force

22.89 million (2016 est.)

Labor force - by occupation

agriculture: 4.2%
industry: 24%
services: 71.7% (2009 est.)

Unemployment rate

19.7% (2016 est.)
22.1% (2015 est.)

Population below poverty line

21.1% (2012 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 2.5%
highest 10%: 24% (2011)

Distribution of family income - Gini index

35.9 (2012)
32 (2005)


revenues: $461.3 billion
expenditures: $512.9 billion (2016 est.)

Taxes and other revenues

36.8% of GDP (2016 est.)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)

-4.1% of GDP (2016 est.)

Public debt

99.6% of GDP (2016 est.)
99.2% of GDP (2015 est.)

Fiscal year

calendar year

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

-0.3% (2016 est.)
-0.6% (2015 est.)

Central bank discount rate

0.05% (10 September 2014)
0.25% (13 November 2013)
note: this is the European Central Bank's rate on the marginal lending facility, which offers overnight credit to banks in the euro area

Commercial bank prime lending rate

2.4% (31 December 2016 est.)
2.74% (31 December 2015 est.)

Stock of narrow money

$827.3 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$745 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
note: see entry for the European Union for money supply for the entire euro area; the European Central Bank (ECB) controls monetary policy for the 18 members of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU); individual members of the EMU do not control the quantity of

Stock of broad money

$1.257 trillion (31 December 2015 est.)
$1.369 trillion (31 December 2014 est.)

Stock of domestic credit

$2.135 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.279 trillion (31 December 2015 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares

$787.2 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$992.9 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
$1.117 trillion (31 December 2013 est.)

Current account balance

$24.29 billion (2016 est.)
$16.7 billion (2015 est.)


$266.3 billion (2016 est.)
$277.9 billion (2015 est.)

Exports - commodities

machinery, motor vehicles; foodstuffs, pharmaceuticals, medicines, other consumer goods

Exports - partners

France 15.7%, Germany 11%, Italy 7.4%, UK 7.4%, Portugal 7.1%, US 4.5% (2015)


$287.9 billion (2016 est.)
$302.6 billion (2015 est.)

Imports - commodities

machinery and equipment, fuels, chemicals, semi-finished goods, foodstuffs, consumer goods, measuring and medical control instruments

Imports - partners

Germany 14.4%, France 11.7%, China 7.1%, Italy 6.5%, Netherlands 5%, UK 4.9% (2015)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$53.97 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$50.35 billion (31 December 2014 est.)

Debt - external

$2.094 trillion (31 March 2016 est.)
$1.963 trillion (31 March 2015 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home

$781.4 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$758.7 billion (31 December 2015 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad

$770.3 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$720.6 billion (31 December 2015 est.)

Exchange rates

euros (EUR) per US dollar -
0.9214 (2016 est.)
0.885 (2015 est.)
0.7525 (2014 est.)
0.7634 (2013 est.)
0.7752 (2012 est.)


Electricity - access

electrification - total population: 100% (2016)

Electricity - production

264 billion kWh (2014 est.)

Electricity - consumption

234 billion kWh (2014 est.)

Electricity - exports

16 billion kWh (2014 est.)

Electricity - imports

12 billion kWh (2014 est.)

Electricity - installed generating capacity

102.3 million kW (2014 est.)

Electricity - from fossil fuels

43% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)

Electricity - from nuclear fuels

7.7% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)

Electricity - from hydroelectric plants

19.6% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)

Electricity - from other renewable sources

30% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)

Crude oil - production

4,652 bbl/day (2015 est.)

Crude oil - exports

54,230 bbl/day (2015 est.)

Crude oil - imports

1.349 million bbl/day (2015 est.)

Crude oil - proved reserves

150 million bbl (1 January 2016 es)

Refined petroleum products - production

1.352 million bbl/day (2015 est.)

Refined petroleum products - consumption

1.241 million bbl/day (2015 est.)

Refined petroleum products - exports

416,000 bbl/day (2015 est.)

Refined petroleum products - imports

302,900 bbl/day (2015 est.)

Natural gas - production

24 million cu m (2014 est.)

Natural gas - consumption

27.23 billion cu m (2014 est.)

Natural gas - exports

8.219 billion cu m (2014 est.)

Natural gas - imports

36.38 billion cu m (2014 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves

2.548 billion cu m (1 January 2016 es)

Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy

276 million Mt (2013 est.)


Telephones - fixed lines

total subscriptions: 19,180,192
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 40 (July 2015 est.)

Telephones - mobile cellular

total: 50.926 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 106 (July 2015 est.)

Telephone system

general assessment: well-developed, modern facilities
domestic: combined fixed-line and mobile-cellular teledensity exceeds 145 telephones per 100 persons
international: country code - 34; submarine cables provide connectivity to Europe, Middle East, Asia, and US; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean), NA Eutelsat; tropospheric scatter to adjacent countries (2015)

Broadcast media

a mixture of both publicly operated and privately owned TV and radio stations; overall, hundreds of TV channels are available including national, regional, local, public, and international channels; satellite and cable TV systems available; multiple natio (2008)

Internet country code


Internet users

total: 37.886 million
percent of population: 78.7% (July 2015 est.)


National air transport system

number of registered air carriers: 20
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 414
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 60,809,228
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 1,040,913,279 mt-km (2015)

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

EC (2016)


150 (2013)

Airports - with paved runways

total: 99
over 3,047 m: 18
2,438 to 3,047 m: 14
1,524 to 2,437 m: 19
914 to 1,523 m: 24
under 914 m: 24 (2013)

Airports - with unpaved runways

total: 51
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 13
under 914 m: 36 (2013)


10 (2013)


gas 10,481 km; oil 616 km; refined products 3,461 km (2013)


total: 16,101.5 km
broad gauge: 11,873 km 1.668-m gauge (6,488 km electrified)
standard gauge: 2,312 km 1.435-m gauge (2,312 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 1,884.9 km 1.000-m gauge (807 km electrified); 28 km 0.914-m gauge (28 km electrified); 3.6 km 0.600-m gauge (2014)


total: 683,175 km
paved: 683,175 km (includes 16,205 km of expressways) (2011)


1,000 km (2012)

Merchant marine

total: 132
by type: bulk carrier 7, cargo 19, chemical tanker 8, container 5, liquefied gas 12, passenger/cargo 43, petroleum tanker 18, refrigerated cargo 4, roll on/roll off 9, vehicle carrier 7
foreign-owned: 27 (Canada 4, Germany 4, Italy 1, Mexico 1, Norway 10, Russia 6, Switzerland 1)
registered in other countries: 103 (Angola 1, Argentina 3, Bahamas 6, Brazil 12, Cabo Verde 1, Cyprus 6, Ireland 1, Malta 8, Morocco 9, Panama 30, Peru 1, Portugal 18, Uruguay 5, Venezuela 1, unknown 1) (2010)

Ports and terminals

major seaport(s): Algeciras, Barcelona, Bilbao, Cartagena, Huelva, Tarragona, Valencia (all in Spain); Las Palmas, Santa Cruz de Tenerife (in the Canary Islands)
container port(s) (TEUs): Algeciras (3,608,301), Barcelona (2,033,747), Valencia (4,327,371); Las Palmas (1,287,389)
LNG terminal(s) (import): Barcelona, Bilbao, Cartagena, Huelva, Mugardos, Sagunto


Military branches

Spanish Armed Forces: Army (Ejercito de Tierra), Spanish Navy (Armada Espanola, AE; includes Marine Corps), Spanish Air Force (Ejercito del Aire Espanola, EdA) (2013)

Military service age and obligation

18-26 years of age for voluntary military service by a Spanish citizen or legal immigrant, 2-3 year obligation; women allowed to serve in all SAF branches, including combat units; no conscription, but Spanish Government retains right to mobilize citizens 19-25 years of age in a national emergency; mandatory retirement of non-NCO enlisted personnel at age 45 or 58, depending on service length (2013)

Military expenditures

0.86% of GDP (2012)
0.95% of GDP (2011)
0.86% of GDP (2010)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international

in 2002, Gibraltar residents voted overwhelmingly by referendum to reject any "shared sovereignty" arrangement; the Government of Gibraltar insists on equal participation in talks between the UK and Spain; Spain disapproves of UK plans to grant Gibraltar greater autonomy; Morocco protests Spain's control over the coastal enclaves of Ceuta, Melilla, and the islands of Penon de Velez de la Gomera, Penon de Alhucemas, and Islas Chafarinas, and surrounding waters; both countries claim Isla Perejil (Leila Island); Morocco serves as the primary launching site of illegal migration into Spain from North Africa; Portugal does not recognize Spanish sovereignty over the territory of Olivenza based on a difference of interpretation of the 1815 Congress of Vienna and the 1801 Treaty of Badajoz

Refugees and internally displaced persons

stateless persons: 440 (2015)
note: 14,661 estimated refugee and migrant arrivals (2015 - September 2016)

Illicit drugs

despite rigorous law enforcement efforts, North African, Latin American, Galician, and other European traffickers take advantage of Spain's long coastline to land large shipments of cocaine and hashish for distribution to the European market; consumer for Latin American cocaine and North African hashish; destination and minor transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin; money-laundering site for Colombian narcotics trafficking organizations and organized crime