By Andy Sambidge
Euromonitor report says population to hit 2.6m, driven by influx of expat workers.
Bahrain's population is projected to double by 2030, driven by immigration and a growth in expat workforce, Euromonitor said in a new report on Thursday.
The research house said in its study Bahrain in 2030: The Future Demographic that the Gulf state's population will hit 2.6 million, an increase of 102 percent compared to this year.
It said immigration was the key factor in the huge increase in population from 2010 to 2030, adding that "natural factors" such as steady gains in the number of births would also play a part.
Driven by a big rise in the country's foreign workforce, Asians will make up nearly half of all the country's residents in 20 years time, Euromonitor added.
It said the number of Asians living in Bahrain overtook that of the local population for the first time this year and the gap would grow up to 2030.
Euromonitor said foreign citizens currently make up 51.7 percent of the total population and this would rise to 53 percent by 2030, with most of the increase attributed to workers from south and southeast Asia.
The study said that although Bahrain was tightening immigration controls as part of its Bahrainisation policy, foreigners make up nearly two thirds of the labour force.
Expats working in the country typically drive remittance outflows of about $1.5bn per year.
The report saw Manama's population growing by about 3.5 percent per year up to 2030 but the fastest growing city would be Hamad Town, which is home to much of the workforce employed in the capital city.