European Commission - Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs

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Canary Islands

Introduction

The Canary Islands (shared capitals: Santa Cruz de Tenerife and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria) are composed by seven islands located nearby the South coast of Morocco. The territory has an extension of 7,447 km2 and is inhabited by 2,154,978 people (2017), accounting for 4.6% of the total population in Spain (Eurostat, 2018). Besides already being one of the regions with the highest density of population, it is also among those that have been consistently gaining population over time.
The Canary Islands present a wide range of possibilities in terms of technological innovation due to its strategic geographical location, its special fiscal status and the high quality of human capital it holds. On the other hand, this region also suffers from clear weaknesses caused mainly by the fragile innovative and environmental systems of the islands. The business ecosystem of the Canary Islands relies heavily on the geographical location and the particular characteristics of the archipelago. However as expected; it is mainly devoted to the service sector, with special emphasis in tourism.

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