Inside Spain (21 March-18 April)

Spain aims for a ‘soft’ Brexit, but Gibraltar could be a stumbling block.
Basque separatist terrorist group ETA fulfils disarmament promise.
Washington distances itself from Catalan independence movement.
Fiscal deficit falls within EU targets for first time since 2008.
Madrid rejects mega entertainment complex.

April 18, 2017

Spain’s merchandise exports notch up yet another record

Spain’s exports of goods rose in 2016 for the seventh year running, defying expectations that they would tail off as the economy recovers and domestic consumption picks up.

February 21, 2017

Inside Spain (16 January-20 February)

Rajoy offers to be Trump’s interlocutor in Europe and Latin America.
King’s brother-in-law convicted for fraud and influence peddling.
Thousands protest as former Catalan Premier stands trial.
Merchandise exports notch up yet another record.
Spain drops to 41st position in Transparency International’s Corruption Index.

February 21, 2017

Cyprus’s elusive reunification: a solution so near, yet so far

The reunification of Cyprus is one of the world’s longest running and intractable international problems. The latest talks in Geneva this month between Nicos Anastasiades, the Greek Cypriot President, and Mustafa Akinci, the Turkish Cypriot leader, after 20 months of negotiations, made significant progress. The issues of properties, territorial adjustments, security and guarantees are the most sensitive and core issues yet to be resolved and ones that will determine whether a solution can be reached and approved in referendums.

January 19, 2017

Inside Spain (20 December-16 January)

A busy international agenda.
Catalan independence: prosecutor seeks nine-year ban from public office for former Minister.
Fragmented parliament begins to adapt to a new style of politics.
Pre-crisis GDP (2008) will finally be recovered this year.
Repsol resumes oil activity in Libya.

January 18, 2017

Inside Spain (28 November-20 December)

Spaniards take a dim view of Donald Trump. Constitutional Court halts Catalan plan for independence referendum. Spain improves in PISA international education tests. IMF hails ‘impressive’ economic recovery. US leisure company plans mega US$2.2bn centre near Madrid.

December 20, 2016

Has the time come to reconsider Turkey’s EU membership?

The European Commission’s latest annual report on Turkey’s progress in meeting the conditions to become a full EU member shows that the rule of law, media freedom and human rights have deteriorated to such an extent since last July’s military coup attempt that it would be appropriate to wonder whether the two sides should consider abandoning the accession process.

November 15, 2016

The challenges facing the ‘new’ Spain

Although some Spaniards joke that the country has got along fine with a caretaker government for 315 days, this year has been a lost one. There are some pressing issues that need to be tackled now that there is finally a functioning government. But the new Popular Party (PP) government no longer has an absolute majority.

November 3, 2016

Spain finally has a new government: what lies ahead?

Spain’s minority Popular Party (PP) government, which will be voted in by parliament before the end of October after a 10-month limbo period following inconclusive elections last December and June, has a lot on its plate.

October 25, 2016

Inside Spain (20 September-17 October)

Spain’s call for Britain to share sovereignty of Gibraltar rebuffed.
Socialists in crisis, soul searching over allowing a new Popular Party government.
Three former Popular Party treasurers in macro corruption trial.
Spain continues to overshoot budget deficit target.

October 18, 2016