Spain begs to be at upcoming G-20, Brazil says no
We are starting to get a sense of who the winners and losers of the Great Unraveling are. Spain is definitely a loser.
Just think, a few years ago Spain was the envy of Western Europe with a dynamic and booming property market and prodigious GDP growth. The country was THE holiday-maker’s paradise, with many buying second homes. It ranked with Ireland as a perennial winner in economic growth in Western Europe.
Today, Spain has 4 million unemployed citizens and 1 million households where every member is unemployed. The overall unemployment rate is now edging ever closer to 20%. Property prices have plummeted. And In Spain’s version of General Growth Properties‘ bust, two major property companies, Martinsa Fadesa and Drac, have hit the wall. The banking crisis is only just beginning in earnest as Spanish savings banks are weak and only one major savings bank, Caja Castilla-La Mancha has gone under. Just recently, Mexico surpassed Spain as the largest Spanish-speaking economy.
Spain is suffering from, in a word, depression. And this must be a great come-down for a nation once lauded as one of Europe’s most promising economies.
Unfortunately, more humiliation is being dumped on Spain. You see, Spain is NOT in the G-20. Last November, a lot was made of this because John McCain had dissed the Spanish government during the Presidential elections in the United States and Spain was not invited to the G-20 meeting in Washington D.C. Eventually, Spain – along with the Netherlands – got a hall pass.
Now, another G-20 meeting is coming up – and Spain has not been invited… again. But, to add insult to injury, Brazil is saying that Spain should not ever be invited. After all, it is not a member of this club of the richest, largest economies.
With more economic pain in store for Spain, the country will have to accept its newly diminished status.