Spain Basic Information

By | July 21, 2022

Basic information about the territory

Spain Basic Information

Subchapters:

  • System of governance and political tendencies in the country
  • Foreign policy of the country
  • Population

The system of governance and political tendencies in the country

Kingdom of Spain – Reino de España

Spain is a parliamentary constitutional monarchy.

Strong decentralization is typical for the country – in addition to the national parliament, there are 19 autonomous parliaments (in each autonomous region) with broad powers, the scope of which is not uniform. Autonomous regions have their own government. The Parliament (Cortes Generales) is bicameral. The Congress of Deputies (= lower house) is the basic legislative body. It has 350 members, the president is Meritxell Batet (PSOE). The Senate (= upper chamber) in relation to the Congress of Deputies fulfills the role of the chamber of the second reading and has 265 members, the president is Ander Gil García (PSOE). Check computerminus to learn more about Spain political system.

November 2019 saw the fourth parliamentary election in a row since 2015. 350 MPs and 208 senators (out of a total of 265) are elected in the parliamentary elections, with success in the Chamber of Deputies being key. The seats in the Chamber of Deputies are distributed as follows: PSOE (Socialist Workers Party) 120, PP (People’s Party) 88, VOX (far right) 52, Unidas Podemos (far left party) 35, ERC (left Catalan nationalists) 13, Ciudadanos (center right) party) 10, Junts per Catalunya (right-wing Catalan nationalists) 8, PNV (centre-right Basque nationalists) 7, EH Bildu (left-wing Basque nationalists) 5, Más País 3. The Candidatura de Unidad Popular (CUP) also operates in the Chamber of Deputies with 2 deputies seats, Coalición Canaria (2 deputies), Navarra Suma (2), Bloque Nacionalista Galego (BNG – 1), Partido Regionalista de Cantabria (PRC – 1) and Teruel Existe (1). The last elections brought further fragmentation of the Spanish political scene, when 3 new political parties entered the Parliament (Más País, CUP and Teruel Existe).

The current coalition government consists of the Socialist Party PSOE together with the left-wing party Unidas Podemos, which together strive to fulfill election promises, especially in the social area. The right-wing opposition formed by the People’s Party (PP) and VOX do not fail to question the government’s policy on a daily basis and subject it to constant criticism. The Spanish political scene is becoming increasingly fragmented, new political formations are emerging and extremists on both sides of the political spectrum are strengthening.

The composition of the government

Pedro Sánchez Pérez-Castejón – Prime Minister

Nadia Calviňo – 1st Vice-President, Minister of Economy and Digital Transformation

Yolanda Díaz – 2nd Vice President, Minister of Labor and Social Affairs

Teresa Ribera – 3rd Vice-President, Minister for Ecological Transformation

María Jesús Montero – Minister of Finance and Government Spokesperson

José Manuel Albares Bueno – Minister of Foreign Affairs, EU and Cooperation

Fernando Grande-Marlaska – Minister of the Interior

Margarita Robles – Secretary of Defense

Pilar Llop Cuenca – Minister of Justice

Isabel Rodríguez García – Minister for Territorial Policy and Public Administration

Pilar Alergía Continente – Minister of Education

Joan Subirats – Minister for University Affairs

Carolina Darias – Minister of Health

Diana Morant Ripoll – Minister for Science and Innovation

Ione Belarra Urteaga – Minister for Social Rights and the 2030 Agenda

Reyes Maroto – Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism

Alberto Garzón – Minister of Consumption

José Luis Escrivá – Minister of Social Security, Inclusion and Migration

Raquel Sánchez Jiménez – Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda

Irene Montero – Minister for Equality

Miquel Iceta i LLorens – Minister of Culture and Sports

Luis Planas – Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food

Félix Bolaňos García – Minister for Relations with Parliament and Democratic Memory

Foreign policy of the country

The PSOE government did not significantly change the direction of Spain’s foreign policy, only some topics were emphasized in accordance with the left-wing focus of the government.

Spain’s accents are the defense of multilateralism, dialogue as a tool for solving problems, the feminist agenda, migration as a positive factor for the development of society and Agenda 2030 with the plan to move to a model of a clean, sustainable economy.

Prime Minister Sánchez is active on the international scene with the aim of strengthening Spain’s position in the EU and other international institutions. Check relationshipsplus for Spain defense and foreign policy.

At the end of 2020, Spain published a new concept of foreign policy in order to better respond to the needs of current events. The European Union Spain consistently considers the EU a priority of its foreign policy. It strives for its deeper integration. The former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Josef Borrell, the current High Representative of the EU for Defense and Foreign Policy, was the creator of Spain’s position towards the EU, from which Spain expects the strengthening of the EU’s social dimension, the completion of the economic and monetary union with a common budget, the abandonment of the rule of unanimity when deciding on tax policies and foreign policy, strengthening the strategic capacity of the EU, as well as increasing the European budget above 1%.

At the international level, Spain places the greatest emphasis on Africa (especially the Magherb and the Sahel), the Mediterranean, Latin America, the Middle East, Asia and the USA. The resonating topics of foreign policy are migration (41,945 migrants arrived in Spain in 2021, most of them by sea via the Canary Islands, the situation on the island of Gran Canaria is the most problematic, the current wording of the European Migration and Asylum Pact is not sufficient for Spain), new direction NATO, the conclusion of the EU-Mercosur agreement or the fight against terrorism and respect for human rights.

Population

Population: 47.3 million (2021)

Density per km2: 93 inhabitants/km2

Share of economically active population: 2 million

Average annual population growth: – 0.06%

Average age: men 4years; women 45 years old

Life expectancy: men 79.5; women 85 (2021)

Age structure:

0-14 years: million (14%)

15-64 years: 3million (66%)

over 64: 9.5 million (20%)

Nationality composition:

73% Spanish

16% Catalans

6% Galicians

5% Basque

The most frequently represented nationalities of foreigners: Morocco (14.3%), Romania (12.3%), Great Britain (5.8%), Italy (5.2%), China (3.7%), Colombia (5.6%), Venezuela (3.9%), Germany (2.6%)

Religious composition:

68.8% Catholic

25.5% atheists

2.4% other religions

11.3% agnostics