Moroccans top the list of applicants for naturalization in Spain

Decisions on granting Spanish nationality to foreigners have increased by 300% since last August, the government authorities of the Iberian country have announced.
According to the Spanish Minister of Justice, Pilar Llop, in these months, Spain has gone from an average of 4,800 decisions per month to 19,000, thanks to the robotization of the system. “The system works (…), more than 300% of cases are solved compared to the previous situation,” she said.
The “robotization” of the system is working well. Llop explained that robots now perform some parts of the procedure, which were previously done by civil servants. “This is giving very good results,” she added.
The minister explained that every year some 125,000 applications for nationality are received from residents, “a huge volume”, which covers a multitude of very diverse cases”.
In addition, there are other procedures such as applications for exemption from the residence requirement for obtaining Spanish nationality.
Llop described as “successful” the plan adopted by the government in 2021 to alleviate the processing of cases in the civil registries, welcoming its operability, since the number of cases resolved was greater than the number of cases received.
In August, the Spanish government launched a computer application to automate the procedures, which allowed to resolve in one month about 35,000 cases, or 10% of the total.
“We believe that the application will continue to work and that we will be able to smooth out this nationality situation, because people have been waiting for a long time,” the minister said at the time.
Until September, Spain had registered a cumulative total of some 350,000 applications for nationality from people living in the country, many of them immigrants from Latin America.
In 2021, 144,012 foreigners living in the Iberian country acquired Spanish nationality, according to data from Spain’s National Statistics Institute.
Morocco is the country with the most citizens who have obtained Spanish nationality, with 42,000 successful applications. Next are three Latin American countries: Colombia, Ecuador and Bolivia, with about 8,300 each. The Dominican Republic and Venezuela had more than 6,000 each.

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