• Spain's news in English

Brand Spain seeks boost with Brussels fiesta

George Mills · 5 Jun 2013, 16:15

Published: 05 Jun 2013 16:15 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The all-star launch of the campaign took place at the headquarters of the European Parliament in Brussels.

The plan was to project the image of "a modern and traditional Spain" with great potential despite the current crisis, sources within the Spanish parliament told Europa Press. 

Around 500 people attended the event  — mainly civil servants and Spanish delegates in the Europe Parliament according to national daily El País.

The most senior official from Europe was the Spanish Vice President of the European Commission Joaquín Almuniana.

Speaking at the launch of an initiative originally proposed by the Eurodeputy for Spain's ruling Popular Party Luis de Grandes, Almuniana spoke up against the stereotype of a Europe made up of "an industrious north and a lazy south".

He also called for Spain to rediscover "the values of the Transition" — the period after the death of the Spanish dictator Francisco Franco — when the country moved towards democracy.

Drawing parallels with Europe, the European Vice President said that those values of "consensus" were "not so different from those in the construction of Europe.

Spain's Foreign Affairs Minister  José Manuel García-Margallo sounded a stern warning to the country's Basque and Catalan nationalist saying "whoever has one brand had one brand but if you have two, you only have half (a brand), and those who have three don't have any".

Organizers said the event, which included showcases of Spanish cooking, fashion and music, only cost €10,000 to put on but El País questioned the use of what was "largely a Spanish get-together. 

The "Brand Spain" initiative has also received plenty of criticism within Spain for trying to gloss over the country's real problems.

Twitter was ablaze on Wednesday with comments on the 'real' state of Brand Spain.

Story continues below…

"Brand Spain reeks of corruption, eviction, cuts to health and education, this is made in Spain," user wrote user ‏@NurideNu.

Meanwhile, a user going by the name of Irene wrote: "Brand Spain is me — a university graduate — jumping up and down on the spot because I have an interview for a two-month job."

"The government wants to get rid of the image of a tourist Spain but presents Brand Spain with flamenco and tapas," wrote Gemma Lienas.

George Mills (news@thelocal.ch)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Balearic Islands choose to keep summertime forever
The islands will have longer evenings during winter. Photo: AFP

The Balearic Islands want to keep summertime when the rest of Spain turns the clocks back on Sunday.

  Brazilian had 'uncontrollable desire to kill': Spain police
Francois Patrick Nogueira Gouveia has been charged with murdering his uncle, his wife and their two children. Photo: Guardia Civil.

A Brazilian teenager accused of dismembering his uncle and aunt and killing their two young sons in a grisly crime that shocked Spain had an "uncontrollable desire to kill", police said on Monday.

Man rescued from bin after climbing in to find old clothes
Photo: Policía Local Murcia

Police were called after passersby reported hearing a man calling for help from within a rubbish bin in the Vistabella neighbourhood of Murcia, southern Spain.

Spain faces crucial week as conservatives re-take power
Mariano Rajoy hopes to form a government this week. Photo: AFP

Spain entered a crucial week as acting conservative PM Mariano Rajoy prepared to re-take power, ending ten rollercoaster months without government marked by hope and disillusion.

Eight very creepy Halloween costumes ideas from Spain
Photo: Pan's Labyrinth

Forget flamenco dancers and bullfighters, The Local counts down the freakiest alternative costume ideas to dress up in this Halloween.

Man attacked by racist thug in UK street for talking Spanish

Tomas Gil, 27, from Valencia in eastern Spain was talking to his girlfriend in their native language after a night out in the British seaside town of Poole when he was set upon by a racist thug.

Malaga: Police probe bizarre 'sex death' of homeless Brit
The man was found near Malaga airport. Photo: Dennis Howlett / Flickr

A British homeless man was found dead tied to a bench near Malaga airport with his trousers down and his genitals in a can of tuna.

Clock ticking as Spain races to avoid third elections
Third elections could now be avoided. Photo: AFP

Spain's Socialists voted on Sunday to allow the conservatives to take power, likely averting a third election for Spaniards tired of going to the polls.

Spain worries about tourism future
Photo: Josep Lago / AFP file picture

After basking in its best tourist summer season in 15 years, Spain now sees dark clouds on the horizon as popular destinations reach saturation point and holidaymakers are more thrifty, industry experts say.

Spain's Socialists lift veto on Rajoy to break deadlock
The Socialists have decided to lift their veto on the minority conservative government or not. Photo: Gerard Julien/ AFP

Spain's embattled Socialists on Sunday voted to lift a long-standing veto that has prevented the conservatives from forming a minority government, in what should finally end a ten-month political impasse.

Analysis & Opinion
Out of the dark: Five years on from Eta ceasefire
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Spanish 'La Mafia' restaurants banned after Italian complaint
Spain's top court overturns bullfighting ban in Catalonia
Hunt launched for ten most wanted Brit fugitives hiding out in Spain
Napflix: Spaniards launch very boring TV channel for siestas
Madrid parish church faces fine over 'too noisy' bells
Celebrate expat life at Madrid’s THRIVE convention
Fury after kids told to bring their own loo roll to school
Disney announces plans for Don Quixote action movie
Activist tells 8-yr-old matador wannabe with cancer 'just die'
King to make last minute push to avoid third vote in Spain
Amazing photos of Catalonia's 'human tower' contest
What's on in Spain: October 2016
'No way, Jose! You'll never get your hands on our Rock'
Recipe: How to make a classic Spanish tortilla de patatas
Chorizo in paella? Go back to cooking school Jamie Oliver
Spain in eye of a perfect storm after 10 months without govt
Thousands share clips of life for 'Spain in a Day' film
Ten incredible Spain locations for Game of Thrones season 7
Analysis & Opinion
Why moving to Spain could be the best decision of your life
Seven reasons why autumn is the very best season in Spain
Spanish study finds four types of personality. Which are you?
New search underway for civil war grave of poet Lorca
jobs available