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

Lavapiés recordará a Arturo Barea dando nombre a la plaza situada frente a las Escuelas Pías

Mi petición lanzada hace un año dar su fruto. Barea sería recordado en su país de origen y no solo en su país de exilio (Inglaterra).

December 1, 2016

My double nationality remarks at meeting of Brit ex-pats in Madrid

How many of you have lived in Spain for more than 10 years?

Those of you who have qualify, if you so wish, to start the process of double nationality provided you also pay taxes here and contribute to the social security system, assuming you are not retired.

A Spaniard in the UK, however, only needs five years residency and unlike we Brits does not run the risk of having his second passport (the British one granted to him) taken away from him if he continues to use his Spanish passport.

November 29, 2016

Inside Spain (17 October-28 November)

Spain back in the international arena, Merkel applauds Rajoy.
Madrid signals softer approach towards Gibraltar.
New Popular Party minority government faces many challenges.
European Commission downgrades growth forecast, making fiscal deficit reduction more difficult.
Ferrovial wins €300m high-speed train contract in UK.

November 29, 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

Where is Spain Going?

My talk at the Gibraltar Literary Festival. An extended version of the one given in Dublin and Galway.

October 20, 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