Spain News Links: 02/05/2012


Two things in particular persuaded me that it was time to write this book. One was the realisation that the first and most important impact of climate change on human civilisation will be an acute and permanent crisis of food supply. Eating regularly is a non-negotiable activity, and countries that cannot feed their people are unlikely to be ‘reasonable’ about it.” (Gwynne Dyer, Climate Wars)


  • Another round of global food inflation? There is talk of a surge in the global price of soy beans, caused by a drop in world production due to unusual dry weather in Latin America and increased soy bean imports in China, where it is a major foodstuff. ZeroHedge


  • Madness continues in Spain Bloomberg talks to Jesus Encinar, from, and concludes: “Spain is still in denial”. They compare Spain to Ireland. In Spain, we can expect: “many years of significant challenges”. Bloomberg
  • Valencia, a reflection of the sickness called Spain Meanwhile, Reuters has a go at Valencia and squeezes it all into the same article: the implosion of the property market, corrupt politicians, Formula 1, the collapse of the building societies and the possibility of being bailed out by the central government. Reuters
  • Morales expropriates REE to celebrate May 1 Just like that butterfly effect, and only two weeks after Kirchner did the same thing with Repsol in Argentina, the Bolivian has taken control of Red Eléctrica’s subsidiary. Despite this, the Spanish government denies any kind of attack on Spain… ABC
  • Aznar knew what he was doing «Spain has done very badly. Disastrously. The British Empire lost its colonies and the US was born; Spain lost its colonies and a circus was born. When the UK has problems, it doesn’t hesitate to send its fleet in (…) Spain doesn’t even have a fleet.El Mundo
  • Lloyds suggests urgently selling Spanish bonds Lloyds analysts believe the best thing to do faced with the uncertainty caused by the Greek and French elections this weekend is…to quickly sell Spanish bonds. Cotizalia


  • The failure of a country called Spain The authors of this new book lived through the crash as advisors on Zapatero’s political advisory team and say there are three reasons which explain the current mess: the global financial crisis, a badly designed euro and the (political, institutional and economic) deficiencies of the Spanish system. El País
  • Torres threatens the Spanish Monarchy Urdangarin’s former partner says he has an another 200 ‘more compromising’ e-mails about the monarchy, and that he will publish them if there is no agreement. I imagine Urdangarin and the Spanish King want to avoid such an outcome. El Mundo
  • Does Spain know how to create wealth? Spanish/Argentine entrepreneur Martin Varsavsky suggests Spain doesn’t know how to create true wealth: “most Spaniards, voters and government included, don’t really understand how wealth is created. They don’t understand how capitalism works and, therefore, how it sometimes does not work.Martin Varsavsky
  • Spanish manufacturing PMI tanks again: falling to 43.5 points in April, compared to 44.5 in March. Any number below 50 is considered systemic pessimism. Markit
  • Spanish industry suffocating under high energy prices. In neighboring France, energy costs €70/MWh and in Spain business owners must pay €110/MWh, which is 57% more expensive. Libre Mercado
  • Rajoy preparing even harsher austerity measures for 2013. It matters not that there seems to be growing agreement austerity isn’t going to work as a solution to the crisis, Rajoy is going to try it anyway, and he’s going to try really, really hard. Suffer Spain! La Razón
  • Don’t let immigrants unite The police and the Immigration and Emigration department fear immigrants are using their right to civil partnership to then ask for a residency permit. The police says there has been ‘an alarming rise’ in this type of application. El País
  • Don’t put that table in my square…! The #15M movement is going to find it much harder to protest in Madrid’s central Puerta del Sol this year than last year. New government, new attitude. The police aren’t even letting them put up an information point for the moment. Público
  • Chris

    Hi Mathew
    Many thanks for the précis of the Spanish papers.
    What changes/effects are you seeing locally. (I think Murcia)
    I have family in the Malaga and they say things are pretty normal

  • Christopher Gamble

    Shocking News but good to be informed by Mr Bennett’s excellent resume’s and comments about Spain and the Spanish. Friends often unaware or worse still in denial are constantly surprised by my level of knowledge!
    I always direct them to ‘The Spanish Challenge’ to see it for themselves.