Política, Brexit, turismo, actualidad, finanzas, Cataluña, ecologismo, medios o corrupción son algunos de los temas que trata este boletín informativo

23/03/20. 
Opinión. El periodista Lenox Napier repasa la actualidad española en su boletín semanal Business Over Tapas, al que puede suscribirse por 60 euros anuales. Puede obtener más información en su web (AQUÍ) o en su perfil (AQUÍ). EL OBSERVADOR / www.revistaelobservador.com ofrece este contenido tres días después de su lanzamiento...

Editorial:

It’s hard to write an editorial about anything other than the elephant in the room, and the reality is that we have all been subject enough to an endless blast of stories, admonitions, warnings and unlikely cures for the coronavirus. My two cents on the subject here would be pointless.

Housing:

‘Spanish house prices grow at slowest rate since 2015. The National Statistics Institute's House Price Index (IPV) also showed that house prices in the fourth quarter of 2019 dropped by 0.6% on average compared to the third quarter’. ET Realty understates the case.

Mark Stücklin opinion at Spanish Property Insight here: ‘...This is all terrible news for the Spanish housing market, especially the second-home market, which relies so heavily on tourism. I expect sales activity will be paralysed for three months at least, possibly longer. It looks like 2020 could be a write off...’.

Tourism:

‘Camp-sites: Should 18,000 long-stay tourists be evicted or allowed to stay? If the Government decrees the closure of these establishments, the "homecoming" operation should be carefully planned’. Item from Hosteltur here. It says ‘...for the moment, they are confined to their plots...’.

A report comes from El País from the border between Spain and Portugal, where a number of caravans are trapped in no-man’s-land.

Ryanair will cease flying from midnight of March 24th and will put 15,000 employees in Spain on temporary lay-off (‘probably’ through April). El Mundo has the lowdown here.

Finance:

‘Spain announces a €200,000 million relief package against effects of the coronavirus. PM Pedro Sánchez calls it “the greatest mobilization of resources in the country’s entire democratic history”’. Item from El País in English here.

Inditex founder has a multibillion-euro property bet. Pontegadea has remit to invest €2bn (2,000 million) a year from Amancio Ortega’s retail fortune. In an unassuming side street in central London sits the UK office of a low-profile Spanish company that owns Amazon’s Seattle headquarters, a large chunk of Oxford Street and most of Inditex, the retail powerhouse. Pontegadea is the personal investment company of Amancio Ortega, the founder and majority shareholder of Inditex, which is best known as owner of the Zara chain...’. Item from The Financial Times here. In less encouraging news for the magnate.
From Bolsamanía comes ‘Amancio Ortega loses more than 21,300 million with the collapse of Inditex and Enagás on the stock market’.

Lawbird’s Antonio Flores reveals the ‘must-knows’ for S.L. company owners in Spain setting up a Spanish Limited Company is a relatively straightforward process’. Useful item from The Olive Press here.

Politics:

As we are enjoined to stick together and save our political spats and criticism until after the crisis is over (even Vox has toned it down and asks for support for Pedro Sánchez’ government), we read at Eldiario.es that one politician still holds out. ‘The presidents of autonomous communities held by the PP have left only Pablo Casado to make his attacks on the Government’. A later article reports that Casado has now toned down his rhetoric and says ‘Sánchez can count on his group and will find "more loyalty" in them than in his own partners, although he asks for the army to be deployed across Spain’. El Confidencial here.

From La Voz de Almería: ‘Sánchez asks for "sacrifice" and "unity" because "the worst is still to come" He affirms that the "common enemy" is the virus and it is being confronted "with the weight of the State"’.

The April 5 regional elections in the País Vasco and Galicia have been postponed ‘indefinitely’.

The former Vox deputy for Almería Luz Belinda Rodríguez will become the "voice" of the Falange in the Andalusian Parliament. Rodríguez, who left Vox in January saying the party was too close to the PP, continues as an independent but will now be advised and supported by the (even further to the right) Falange de las JONS’. The story comes from Almería Hoy here.

The Coronavirus:

Stay at home. Quédate en casa. For anything up to four months...

The King spoke by television to Spaniards on Wednesday night telling them to put aside their differences while praising their forbearance and bravery in this difficult crisis.

From El País here: ‘"We are not at the peak of the epidemic, but at the beginning"

David Nabarro, WHO commissioner for Covid-19 in Europe, paints a future full of uncertainties’.

El País in English says ‘Spain registers second-highest daily rise in coronavirus infections in the world. Madrid government believes fall in the number of new cases will only be seen in the region after 10 days of total lockdown’.

Numbers: Last Wednesday midday saw 2,067 cases registered with 47 deaths. A week later, we have 13,716 registered cases and 533 deaths (latest figures, all countries here).

El Comidista tells us how to take care while food-shopping here.

Political people with coronavirus (various sources): Quim Torra, Pere Aragonés (the president and vice president of Catalonia); Begoña Gómez (the wife of Pedro Sánchez); Isabel Díaz Ayuso (president of the Madrid Region); Santiago Abascal, Javier Ortega Smith (the president and vice president of Vox); Macarena Olona, Ana Pastor, Paloma Martín, Beatriz Linuesa, Irene Montero (minister and wife of Pablo Iglesias),  Carilina Darias...

‘A 21-year-old Spanish football coach has died from coronavirus, having been suffering from a form of leukaemia. Francisco Garcia, a youth team coach at Malaga-based club Atletico Portada Alta, had an unknown pre-existing health condition that resulted in him being more vulnerable to the virus than usual for an individual of his age, though he was only informed of having cancer after going to hospital with symptoms of coronavirus...’. Item from The Independent here.

177 Coronavirus fake news items at Maldito Bulo here.

The eccentric and crusading doctor known as ‘Spiriman’ has once again been in the news, here for criticising the president and the interior minister for not doing enough to fight the coronavirus. Spiriman (Jesús Candel) is all over YouTube, and is found here in an amusing video at El Español where he tells (in broad andaluz) the kids to ‘Wake the f**k up’.

‘Welcome to Dystopia: My Life under Lockdown in Spain’ from Wolf Street here.

Lenox writes at Spanish Shilling – ‘Apocalypse Now’ here.

Brexit:

Brexit Veritas
has an interesting piece here: ‘The 5 million - Not all Brexit citizens are equal’.  It contrasts Brits in Europe with EU citizens in the UK. It begins; ‘Many EU citizens resident in the UK (EUinUK) and UK citizens resident in the EU (UKinEU) have been harmed and abandoned by institutions and society in the wake of Brexit. Unfortunately, this is what we all have in common, and it's devastating. At the same time, there are some differences in the situations both groups face, and this article sets out the most important of these differences...’.


Residency
If you are resident in Spain before the transition period ends on 31 December 2020, you will be able to stay.
If you arrive in Spain before 31 December 2020, you will be able to register as resident in Spain under the current rules, and will have your right to residence in Spain protected for as long as you remain resident.
If there are changes to residency registration processes we will update this guidance as soon as information is available.
For more information:

  • Read the Spanish government’s guidance for UK nationals in Spain here.
  • Sign up for email updates to this guidance on living in Spain here

(Our thanks to Jake)

Media:

Many of the usual places where one can find the foreign-language free newspapers are closed, but many others will be open. The Olive Press says they will be distributing their Thursday paper as best they can.


Ecology:

From ‘The fight to save Europe’s olive trees from disease’ at Horizon here, we read ‘A plant disease spread by sap-sucking insects has been devastating olive and fruit orchards across southern Europe, but scientists are inching closer to halting its spread with the help of insect repelling clays, vegetative barriers and genetic analysis...’.


Various:

The (only other noteworthy) news this week is that King Felipe has become aware of his father's misdeeds (through the press) and his having put Felipe as a partner and inheritor on an account in Panama where some ill-gotten money ended up. Acting quickly - and nobly - Felipe has renounced any inheritance from his father and has ordered that his father will no longer receive a State income (194,000€ in 2018). From ElDiario.es comes news that the ex-companion Corinna Larsen has eight boxes of evidence which could come to light. The news-source also provides this comment ‘...It has not been Spain, nor the Congress, nor his own son who has denounced or prosecuted the possible irregularities, although this Sunday Felipe VI tried to claim points for transparency. It has been the Swiss Prosecutor's Office and good journalism that have finally found out that Juan Carlos I appears in the paperwork of two foundations, one Swiss and the other Panamanian...’. The Guardian also covers the issue here. From VoxPópuli comes the damning ‘Felipe VI did not inform Anticorruption of his father's hidden fortune in Switzerland. The Casa del Rey has announced that the monarch informed Juan Carlos I that in March 2019 he had received a letter from Corinna's lawyers advising him of his place as heir to the Lucum Foundation’BBC World has the story of Spanish spies harassing Corinna here: ‘A woman claiming to be a former lover of Spain's retired King Juan Carlos is accusing the country's intelligence services of waging a campaign of threats and intimidation against her aimed at protecting the interests of the monarchy...’.


‘The Chinese embassy in Spain reproached on Saturday the secretary general of Vox, Javier Ortega Smith, who has tested positive for COVID-19, who speaks of the disease in a video as "the damn Chinese viruses" and ensures that his "Spanish antibodies" are fighting against them "until they are defeated"...’. La Cope reports here.

‘The Spanish Guitar - A brief history. The name "guitar" comes from the ancient Sanskrit word for "string" - "tar". (This is the language from which the languages of central Asia and northern India developed.) Many stringed folk instruments exist in Central Asia to this day which have been used in almost unchanged form for several thousand years, as shown by archaeological finds in the area. Many have names that end in "tar", with a prefix indicating the number of strings...’. Article from Eye on Spain here.

Drunken Brits in Benidorm ignore home-confinement with a street barbecue. They celebrate St. Patrick's Day. They have thrown beer-cans at the police. "They are drunk and disorderly," says one of the affected officers’.  (We Brit residents in Spain are, I hope, all mortified by this horrible behaviour).

Loli and I run a stables outside Almería (the horses are eating as they do, and no classes for the meantime...). Here’s the photoblog.

See Spain:

‘Tales of Mystery’ with Eye on Spain here. ‘Spain is rich in mythology, the entire country is home to towns, cities and buildings that are renowned on account of legends involving ghosts that inhabit them, paranormal phenomena within their walls or tales of impossible love. Many have been handed down from generation to generation. Various cities organise dramatised guided tours that recount tales of mystery dating back in time, often under the moonlit sky to ramp up the emotion. A small selection of just some of these tales, some famous and others not, serves to help those visiting these cities find out a little more about their secrets...’.


Finally:

Josh White: Takin’ Names here.