#EmbraceSpain XXXVIX: Spain embraces the UK

Coinciding with King Felipe VI’s visit to the United Kingdom, the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and El País, the leading Spanish and Latin American newspaper, launched the Observatory of the Spanish Speaking World. The presentation and signing of the agreement took place on July 12th at the Cañada Blanch Centre, headquarters for the Study of Contemporary Spain and the Catalan Observatory of the London School of Economics.

Relevant academic figures participated in this event such as the historian and Hispanist Paul Preston, Julio Crespo MacLennan, Historian and Director of the Cervantes Institute in London, Sarah Flew, Head of Foundation and Business Partnerships of the LSE, and Fernando Del Canto, as legal adviser of the observatory.

It has also been a privilege to participate in the Spanish-British Business Meeting (UK-Spain Business Forum), a great moment in the Anglo-Spanish relations. During his speech in the Westminster Palace, the first taken place by a Spanish monarch before the British Parliament in 31 years, King Felipe VI highlighted the importance of maintaining and bettering the relations between both countries. The mention of Gibraltar was not missed, offering his confidence towards the dialogue and effort between both governments to overcome any differences and find solutions for them.

During the visit, in the Queen of England’s speech, there was no open reference towards “brexit” who, in any case, said that she hoped that a relationship based on ties as strong as those between Spain and the United Kingdom would guarantee the prosperity of both nations “whatever the challenges coming” in the future be.

This week we have also participated in Barcelona in the dinner-tribute to all the Spanish Olympic medalists in Summer and Winter Games, one the central acts of the activities surrounding the 50th Anniversary of the AS paper . In total, there are 420 heroes that conquered 151 medals, 377 of which are still alive and well and starred in this event.
The dinner, in collaboration with the Spanish Olympic Committee (COE), took place in the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC), in the incredible Palau Nacional of Montjuic building, the main stage of the 1992 games.One of the most moving moments of the gala was the performance of the olympic hymn by the Sant Jordi Choir, which you can listen in the link below.

With regards to the Gulf Crisis, in presence of the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, the secretary of state of the United States, Rex Tillerson, met with Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani and Kuwait Minister of State Sheikh Mohammed Al Abdullah Al Mubarak Al Sabah. The meeting acknowledged the great efforts being made through dialogue and diplomatic channels and, how key is the mediation done by the Emir of Kuwait.
The Kuwaiti Minister reiterated that Qatar is always open to a constructive dialogue to resolve this dispute, a dialogue based on the principles of mutual respect under the umbrella of international law. The US State Department spokesman said: Let’s hope that all parties agree to dialogue, we will continue to support the mediating efforts of the Kuwaiti Emir.
On the other hand, the arrogance of Donald Trump is still alive. He mentioned that the American military air base is located in Qatar, “Al-Udeid airbase”, which serves as headquarters and central command for some 10,000 American troops. He commented: “If we have to leave, we have 10 countries that would be happy to build us an American base, and that would be willing pay for it.”

Meanwhile, Qatar remains proactive and, in reaction to the blockade of food products, this week they received 165 dairy cows from Germany, the first to have come from the 4,000 that will import, and with them they will create a new Milk brand.

Back to Spain, the new Law of Urgent Reforms to Freelance Work has been finally approved in the Chamber of Deputies (the lower chamber of the Spanish Parliament), but the Spanish Freelancers organizations have not stop demanding their historical claims. The UPTA (Union of Professionals and Self-Employed Workers) claims that self-employed workers must pay their contributions based on the net income. Today, all the self-employed must pay according to the contribution, regardless of the income they have earned during the month.
We can ask ourselves: Could self-employed workers pay based on their income? Why UPTA demands the adaptation of the laws to the reality of the self-employed? Are there other proposals from other freelancers associations?

One more week we continue providing the latest news on the topics and subjects we dealt with and discussed in our office. In the meantime, you can follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin.

Xavier Nova
General Manager at Del Canto Chambers

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