New Spanish government’s strong start could strengthen EU
Spanish conservatives have managed to restore economic growth, but the shortcomings of Mariano Rajoy’s governing style and a corruption scandal have created an opening for their main rivals to take power. Thus far, socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez is off to a surprisingly strong start.
Spain and Morocco: trouble or potential?
The burden of controlling irregular immigration, terrorism and drug smuggling has fallen disproportionately on the European Union’s southern members, including Spain. Ensuring stability on both sides of the Strait of Gibraltar, one of the world’s key waterways, is particularly tricky. If the new government in Madrid can’t find ways to work more closely with Morocco, the problems both countries are facing could get worse.
Nationalisms collide in Catalonia
If the situation after the Catalonian government’s declaration of independence were not so serious, it could be likened to a traditional Spanish farsa – a comedy of errors. Two national traditions have collided head-on – the republicanism of Catalonia and the military imperialism of Castile – and in modern-day Europe, it will be very difficult to resolve the conflict by purely legal means. Both sides have already made plenty of miscalculations.
New threat to Spain as Catalonia looks to break away
Spain has been rocked by a financial crisis for the last five years and has imposed austerity measures to cut its debt mountain while youth unemployment climbs to more than 25 per cent. But a bigger threat has emerged as a growing number of Catalonians indicate they want their region to be independent of central government. This could lead the Basque region to foll...
Spain remains crucial to the EU and Europe despite its crisis
The sense of danger in the eurozone following the financial and sovereign debt crises of Greece, Ireland and Portugal, remains with fears of similar risks to other economies in southern Europe. Spain and Italy are in the spotlight as Cyprus reaches a last-minute rescue deal. Events in Spain are confirming everyone’s worst fears but it remains crucial to the EU. ...
Latin America and EU trade summit falls short of expectations
Economies in the European Union are struggling, while many in Latin America are booming. But at a summit of EU and Latin American states in Chile in January 2013, a number of key European heads, including the UK and France, failed to turn up, and the Latin American delegation appeared riven with internal divisions. There is a desire for more trade between the two r...
Public protests as Portugal serves up austerity budget
Public protests, some turning violent, have greeted austerity measures aimed at reducing Portugal’s deficit. A national strike has been called for November as the Portuguese government outlined its new budget involving tax rises and cuts in the number of public workers. GOVERNMENT austerity packages are attracting huge v...
Geopolitics: Spain must tackle national debt quickly
Spain voted overwhelmingly for a change of party and a new government as it fights to avoid a financial bailout. Mariano Rajoy, the new prime minister, can lose no time in picking a new team to introduce tough measures and spending cuts. The ratings agencies have already downgraded Spain. This briefing identifies who the key players in the government may be. ...