Finance still the main story on the front pages of the papers in Spain with reports that Merkel has agreed to reduce the cost of the Spanish bond. As a result the Risk Premium fell 40 points yesterday and the interest on a ten year bond is below 7%, despite the fact that the formula for the loan is still not decided.
Most covered the news that Antonis Samaras is to become the new Greek Prime Minister, and one of his first decisions has been to place a banker as the economy minister.
And of course the legalisation of ETA as the Constitutional Court has given the green light by 6 votes to 5 to Sortu which can now present itself at the next elections, got a lot of coverage.
Other stories included the closure of the Metro in Madri earlier at night to save money, the escalation of violence in the minors strike and they attempt to bring down a helicopter, speculation that Spain will be ‘prudent’ but will beat France, and good reviews of the Madonna concert in Barcelona.
Stories catching the eye online include:
Variable speed limit to be installed on Spanish motorways and dual-carriageways
Spain’s Interior Minister, Jorge Fernández Díaz, has announced the government’s intention to install variable speed limits on all Spanish motorways and dual-carriageways.The maximum speed will vary according to weather and traffic conditions. In an interview with TV3, the minister revealed plans to pass new traffic laws during the second half of the year. He said the government was considering reducing the speed limit on B roads from 100 km/h to 90 as this is where 80% of accidents happen, with there being a “direct correlation between speed limits and accident rates” He also confirmed that there were plans to bring speed limits on Spanish roads in line with other European speed limits, but would not confirm whether the motorway speed limit would be raised to 130 km/h, although he did confirm that the idea is being discussed. As well as outlining plans to put electronic variable speed limit panels on the motorways and dual-carriageways (like the ones already in place on the access roads around Barcelona) he said the same system was being considered for minor roads. On the roads around Barcelona, where variable speed limits have been in force for some time already, the maximum speed can be reduced from 120 km/h to 60 km/h on motorways and major roads from 80 km/h to 40 km/h on secondary routes. thinkSPAIN
Summer will be “slightly warmer” than normal say forecasters
Summertime, which officially begins at 1.09am on Thursday, will be heralded by rising temperatures this weekend, with the mercury reaching 35ºC in a number of places around Spain, say forecasters. After a few days of lower temperatures and unstable weather, the whole country is going to see temperatures start to rise again over the next few days. In the provinces of Almería, Córdoba, Girona, Málaga, Lleida and Zaragoza temperatures of above 32ºC can be expected, with the mercury hitting 35ºC in Murcia. Spanish summers tend to be dry and hot and “fairly stable and predictable” especially in the south of the country and the Mediterranean, said a spokesperson for the Spanish Met. Office (Aemet), with this year threatening to be “warmer than normal”. Average daily temperatures have been slightly higher (1.1%) than normal this year, with a brief springtime heatwave between 11th and 15th of May, when temperatures went over the 35ºC mark in Andalucía, Extremadura, Castilla-La Mancha, Murcia, Aragón, the Canary Islands and parts of Galicia, going as high as 38ºC in south western parts of Andalucía. thinkSPAIN
British homeowners win landmark ruling against CAM in Spain
A group of British homebuyers have won a landmark ruling against a bank, which failed to return their deposits. The 47 off-plan buyers are now to get their investments back in full, plus interest and damages. The judge in Hellin, Murcia, declared that 55 sales contracts should be terminated due to ‘serious breaches’ by the developer, who failed to build the homes. He ordered that a total of €1.5m, currently being held by the CAM bank, should be returned immediately. The Olive Press
easyJet to close their base in Madrid
Budget airline easyJet has announced it is to close its Madrid base over the winter, but it will to continue to fly to the Spanish capital from other bases. It remains to be seen whether the base will be established again next summer or not. The company said it was reviewing the options for the eight aircraft based in Madrid and their 310 crew, but the pilots and cabin crew would be offered a job in the airline’s other bases. Typically Spanish
Ban lifted on Basque party with links to ETA
Spain’s constitutional court has ruled that a previously banned Basque independence party with links to the armed separatist group ETA can reform, a judicial source said on Wednesday. Sortu was created in early 2011 by members of Batasuna, the political wing of ETA that has been banned from political life since 2003, in an bid by the movement to participate in local elections. However Spain viewed the creation of Sortu as a way for ETA to infiltrate the government and outlawed it in March 2011. Instead Batasuna formed a successful coalition with two legal independence parties Eusko Alkartasuna and Alternatiba that went on to become the second biggest party in local elections in May last year. The ruling means that Sortu will be able to stand in regional elections slated for 2013. Batasuna claims it has no longer has ties with ETA, which itself announced what it said was the “definitive” end to its campaign of violence in October 2011, though it has refused to disband completely. ETA is blamed for the deaths of over 800 people in more than 40 years of bombing and shooting for an independent Basque homeland in northern Spain and southern France. Expatica
Todays Number is ………..234, heading in the right direction again but with five days ahead of driving and the UK will be a challenge to keep it heading that way!
Listen to Chris Marshall discuss these and other issues relating to Spain on the Pippa Jones weekday show on iTalk FM between 1 and 3pm on Costa Blanca 102.7FM and Costa del Sol 97.1FM and 102FM sponsored by TorFX, a leading foreign exchange broker, offering excellent exchange rates for all your international money transfer requirements.