Located in central Spain, the Comunidad de Madrid (CM) enjoys a strategic position which allows it to access a potential market of 1,300m people. This has established the region as an excellent centre to control the Iberian (Portugal and Spain), European and Northern African markets. It is the favourite region in Europe to manage business with Latin America as well as to manage Latin American business in Europe.
The CM enjoys an extensive and modern telecommunications network. As a matter of fact, the region is the core of a radial infrastructure of roads and railways that allow it to be interconnected with the other parts of the country and the rest of Europe. In addition, its international airport (Barajas) facilitates very much to be accessible and to access any part of the world and it is the principal hub of Europe with Latin America.
The population is mainly established around the city of Madrid and therefore the society is predominantly urban. In past years, the existing economic possibilities have attracted a lot of people, both from different regions of Spain and foreign countries so that society is also becoming increasingly diverse. In 2016, the immigration from other countries represented 12% of the total population. This percentage is composed principally by immigrants from Europe of which the majority, are from EU member states, America Latina and Africa (Instituto Estadística de Madrid, IEM).
Madrid enjoys a dynamic and prosperous economy. The region offers multiple business opportunities and a stable economic landscape for companies. In 2016, it reached a gross domestic product (GDP) of €210,813m (Instituto Nacional de Estadistica, INE), which translates into an average income per capita of €32,723 (IEM). According to Eurostat, the latest available figure for GDP per capita in Purchasing Power Standard (PPS) was 35,400 in 2015, a figure which has been steadily increasing since 2013 (32,800). This ranks CM in the first position among the 17 Spanish autonomous communities, significantly above both the national (25,900) and (28.900) EU28 averages.
Madrid is therefore the second economy in Spain, and the first in terms of citizenship quality of life. The economic development is growing steady since 2013, leaving behind the oscillations of the past years and even outpacing the maximums reached before the economic recession.
The main component of the regional gross value added (GVA) is the tertiary sector, accounting for 86.2% of the total, followed by the secondary sector that contributes with the remaining 13.8%, of which Construction represents 4%. The primary sector does not have a significant weight in Madrid’s GVA, being less than 0.1% of total GVA. Both the industry and the services have grown at a faster pace than the national average, while building was slightly below due to the low investment in public works, although previsions point a change in this regard. Financial and insurance activities, commerce, transport and hostelry had a stand out performance. Furthermore, Madrid was recipient of 70.7% of the Foreign Direct Investment received by Spain in 2016. The countries that invested the most were Canada, United Kingdom and France, particularly in real estate and storage and transportation activities (Ayuntamiento de Madrid).
For instance, the abovementioned communication network explains to a great extent the success of the logistics companies in the region. Madrid has also been recognized by its excellence in services related to renewable energies, retail trade, aerospace and aeronautics, tourism and professional services, among which can be highlighted the financial and banking sector, the legal services and those related to advertisement and marketing, consulting, cleaning and security.
There are 516,412 companies established in Madrid, which represent 16% of the total companies located in Spain. The business tissue follows the national model with 95% of those companies having less than 10 employees and only 0.3% having more than 200 workers. In sectorial terms, services gather the biggest share of business (INE). According to Eurostat (2016), CM employed 15.46% (2,833.6 thousand) of the country's workforce aged 15-74: 86.66% in the tertiary sector, 13.1% in the secondary sector and 0.24% in the primary sector.
The unemployment rate was 14.6% in 2016, especially among youth. This is below the national average of 18.6% but above the rate registered by the EU of 8.1% (INE). The previsions for 2017 are positive, indicating a decrease in the unemployment to a 12.4% rate.