The February of this year, the United
The kingdom of Spain is roughly about 504,750 sq. km., including the Balearic and Canary islands (CIA). This land mass is roughly double the size of our state of Oregon.
The country is located in Western Europe and borders the countries of; Andorra, France, Gibraltar, Portugal and Morocco (Ceuta and Melilla) (CIA). The country has roughly about 30% arable land and exports much of its agricultural products. The Spanish population is about 40.
1 million people with about 1% growth rate (CIA). The population mix is mainly that of Mediterranean and Nordic heritage. The Kingdom of Spain is less populated than most of its European counterparts with the majority of the population living in main cities. The government of the Kingdom of Spain is a Parliamentary Monarch. The Chief of State is Juan Carlos I was coordinated in November of 1975. Juan Carlos was the immediate successor of the dictator Gen. Franco (NTDB).
The head of the government is President Jose Maria Aznar Lopez. Aznar is a member of the Popular Party, and won both the popular vote and the designated votes. The ruling body of Spain is a bicameral legislation with a National Assembly, Senate, and Congress. In addition the government also supports a standing military to include; Army, Marines, Air Force, Navy, Cost Guard, National Police, and Civil Guard (NTDB). The military currently has 300,000 active duty men and woman. The current political outlook on Spain is stable. However, Spain is the only country in the EU that has a recognized separatist group known as the ETA.
The ETA stands for Euzkadi Ta Askatasuna meaning Basque Fatherland and Freedom. This movement was started in 1959, and aim was to gain sovereignty for a small area in northern Spain near France. The ETA has accepted responsibility for over 800 deaths and an estimated 1,600 terrorist attacks (CNN) However, in the ETAs defense these attacks were strategically aimed at government officials, and were never intended for innocent bystanders.
The ETA have been involved in peace negotiations and resulted in a 14 Month cease-fire in 1998 (BBC). However that ceasefire ended when peace negotiations did not end in the favor of the ETAs Plan in Zurich Switzerland. It was not until the September 11 attacks that the United States recognized the need for a global effort against terrorism and all its allies. In February of this year, the United States in cooperation with the Spanish government ceased several millions of dollars in ETA and ETA supporters assets in the US and protectorates. (CNN) An additional sensitive situation in recent months has come to the epicenter of debate. The long debated sovereignty of Gibraltar has been in negotiation for the past two years.
While Both Spain and the UK belong to the European Union. The territory of Gibraltar, better known as the Rock has been a source of hostility and resentment. In the Early 1700s the territory seceded to be under the control of Great Britain. When the Spain joined the EU in the early 1980s the territory of Gibraltar was still a sensitive issue. It was agreed upon in 1999 that in two year debate that a solid conclusion would be agreed upon. The closing date for discussion is August 12, 2002.
If no agreement could be reached upon the EU would step in and they two countries would go through mediation and the final decision made by the court would be final and absolute. (BBC) A socioeconomic issue that has become very sensitive for Spanish is the influx of illegal immigrants. The Spanish historically have been constantly invaded by other cultures.
It is because of this historical past that the Spanish have ready accepted many cultural influences from other nations. However, in modern day times with the threats of terrorism and antigovernment organizations, illegal immigration has become a large problem in recent months for the Spanish authorities. Sine the attacks on September 11 the Spanish have almost closed all its doors to any non-EU country.
The influx of African immigrants coming from the Sudan, Morocco and other poor African countries have flooded the canary islands and much of the southern Spanish Shores. The influx of illegal immigration comes from the fear of anti-Arab immigrants to other neighboring countries. The reason many immigrants are flooding the islands and costal lines is because Spain has such an Arab influence, less restrictive immigration laws, and is one of the poorer countries that belong to the EU.
(Washington Post) This influx has caught the Spanish authorities off guard and created a concern by human rights activist. The detaining area has a death-camp like atmosphere for its prisoners. The Spanish government has been called upon by several International Organizations to create basic human living standards for their detainees.Because Spain is a part of the European Union it is considered among the largest trading superpowers in the world.
The risk of operating, transfer or ownership risk is very minimal. Spain, while among the poorer countries that belong to the EU, the government has a less restrictive involvement with foreign investments, commerce as a condition to be a member of the EU. The EU has a great trade relationship with the US and they make up the two larges economic powers in the world. Together, they account for over half of the global economy.
The EU and the US trade relations have been on the up-rise since the end of the cold war and fall of Berlin wall in the 1980s. In the current millennium, both the United States and the European Union, both enjoy the worlds largest commercial trade relationship and the large trade and investments (EUM). For the year 2000, symbiotic relationship in trade amounted to $557.1 billion dollars in goods and services (Unknown). Additionally, EU capital investment in the United States is projected to be about $803 billion dollars being roughly about 65% of the total investment. Bilaterally, the United States is projected to invest in the European market about $574 billion dollars (Unknown).
The bilateral capital investment is important to the success of the monetary union that was started in 1999. The overall faith in the European economy has created 3.5 million jobs in the EU and 4.8 million jobs in the United States and helped stabilized the Euro-Dollar (EUM). Specifically, Spain imports about 156 billion dollars or about 12% with the United States and exports about 6.
3 billion or about 5% into the United States. (CIA) The overall trade with US and Spain is not much in comparison, but is the most they trade with non-EU members. Overall, Spain is country that is recreating itself.
Spain was for a long time a fascist country that had a dictator. I feel that Spain, while in transition now will become a power in its own right. I feel that political structure is stable and with the help of EU and Global fight against terrorist Spain will be competitive again. I feel that Spain made a smart choice by joining the EU. The EU has allowed Spain to get itself out debt, and slow inflation. They European Union have influenced much of Spain and their foreign policy, specifically in commerce. I feel that the EU has save a once prosperous nation from itself and the onslaught of a growing global economy.
BIBLIOReference Page1.Central Intelligence Agency. The World Fact Book,Central Intelligence Agency, 4/20/2002www.cia.
gov2National Trade Data Bank (NTDB), Spain ProfileUS Department of Commerce, 4/20/2002www.stat-usa.gov3.Unkonwn, CNN.comU.S. cracks down on Basque separatist, 02/26/02http://europe.
cnn.com/2002/US/02/26/treasury.eta/index.htm4. Unknown, BBC NewsTimeline: Spain, 03/21/02http://news.
Daniel Wools, Washington PostSpanish Islands Struggle with Africas immigrant wave, 04/14/02http://www.washtimes.com/world/20020411-67428435.htm6.
Unkonwn, The EU Relations with the United States The European Union Magazine (EUM), 4/20/2002, Pgs. 1-8, www.European%20Union%20and%20the%2050americans.htm7. Unkonwn, Building the New Europe: The EU and Its NeighborsThe European Union Magazine (EUM), 4/20/2002, Pgs.