Speech given in plenary on 13th September 2011

Topic: Spanish Property Law 

Mr. President,

I have only one problem with this otherwise excellent report.  It omits any mention of the issue which has generated the highest number of petitions in recent years.  This was the Spanish property issue.

Hundreds of EU citizens from many countries have spent their life savings on dream properties in Spain, only to wake up one morning to find an eviction notice on the mat and a bull-dozer at the gate.

For a decade, Spain has refused to deal with this issue.  It denies property rights and enforceable contracts to EU citizens.  It defies the rule of law.  It makes a nonsense of our commitment to human rights.

This is a scandal.  It shows the impotence not only of the Petitions Committee, but of this parliament, and indeed of the EU generally, to deliver on the promises we make to citizens.

It is time to make a stand, and to tell Spain that we expect it to meet its obligations, and to resolve this problem.

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4 Responses to Speech given in plenary on 13th September 2011

  1. Gary Rickard says:

    Thanks Roger, please keep up the pressure. No real progress is being made and what is proposed seems to involve charging the victims more money to only partly regularise their property rather than any action against the corrupt developers/agents/banks/lawyers/town halls/notaries/architects. The UK consulate advised contacting a Spanish government ombudsman – no reply after many months.
    Bandit country.

  2. Heather Alibakir says:

    Just another hole that needs darning in the EU sock. Time for the rag and bone man!

  3. Sue Swbk says:

    Beatriz Corredor, Secretary of State for Housing, is back on the road this week promoting Spanish property to buyers in cities around Europe.

    She will kick off her tour tomorrow, Thursday 15 September, in Hamburg, Germany, and then visit France, the UK, Sweden, and Holland over the next month.

    This is the second leg of a Government-led road-show to promote Spanish property to markets around Europe

    The first leg, back in May, was aimed at institutional investors. This time round Corredor will be accompanied by banks and developers with a portfolio of properties to sell.

    http://bit.ly/qY2Ps2

    Two things to beware of :

    1) Any improvements that you undertake to older properties will have their rates continually adjusted with each upgrade and the price hikes are quite substantial from what I’ve heard.

    2) If Spain finds itself in the unfortunate position that Greece is in, property taxes will be the first to rise. The Greek Government is adding the tax onto electricity bills which means if you don’t pay them, you get cut off!

  4. Margaret says:

    Thank you Mr. Helmer. One more time you are showing your interest and true commitement to our cause as well as that of service to the citizens of the European Union. You are an example to many of us and you and your party sure are our representative in this parliament. I am distributing copy of your intervention to the many compatriots residing here in Spain.
    Please continue your greatly appreciated support to our cause

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