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Spain's tourist numbers up a record 12 percent in first half
31 July 2017 - Spain keeps on breaking tourism records, with the number of tourists visiting the European Union nation up 12 percent in the first six months of the year. Spain has broken its own tourist number records each year for the past four years ...Tourism represents some 11 percent of Spain's 1.2 trillion euro ($1.41 trillion) gross domestic product. (more)

Spain revises its economic growth forecast upward, again
30 June 2017 - Spain is revising its economic growth forecast for this year upward to 3 percent from 2.7 percent, a further sign of the country's surging recovery. It was the second upward revision to growth so far this year. Spain emerged from recession in late 2013 and is now one of the European Union's fastest-growing economies ... (more)

Spain's hotel sector expects record summer
28 June 2017 - Spanish hoteliers are expecting a record number of foreign visitors this summer, hotel confederation Cehat said on Wednesday [28 June], in a boost for the economy. Spain registered a record 75.5 million foreign visitors in 2016 . . . Tourism accounts for around 11 percent of Spain's economic output and is a major contributor to employment levels. 'Expectations are up across all areas, in prices, nightly stays, and profits,' general secretary of Cehat Ramon Estalella said . . . (more)

Room in the middle: the Africans repopulating Spain's dying villages
11 June 2017 - Native population in the Spanish interior is shrinking but new arrivals are helping keep village schools and farms running. With its abandoned houses, empty streets and ageing, shrinking population, Visiedo in northern Spain could be the poster village for European rural decline. But salvation may be at hand, and from an unlikely quarter. (more)

Spain's smoking ban tied to drop in preterm and underweight babies
17 May 2017 - One year after a nationwide ban on smoking in public took effect in Spain, women had significantly fewer premature or underweight infants, a recent study suggests. (more)

Foreign tourists visiting Spain at record high in 2016
12 January 2017 - The number of visitors to Spain hit a new record in 2016 for a fourth consecutive year, the government said on Thursday (12 Janurary) . . . A popular holiday destination for decades, Spain's thriving tourism industry accounts for around 11 percent of gross domestic product. (more)

Tips from Spain's centenarians on how to live to 100
30 December 2016 - With more than 100,000 people aged 100 or over, Spain is the country with the greatest life expectancy after Japan, OECD data and the latest population census shows. Most of the men and women Reuters photographer Andrea Comas interviewed showed a zest for life and an interest in pastimes from amateur dramatics to playing the piano. Many also continued to carry out daily duties ... The majority of these elderly people were surrounded by family or had loved ones calling in on them daily showing how Spain continues to be a closely-knit society, where family ties are paramount. (more)

Cave etchings 14,500 years old found in northern Spain
15 October 2016 - More than 50 cave etchings thought to be around 14,500 years old have been found in the northern Spanish town of Lekeitio. Bizkaia regional official Unai Rementeria announced the discovery in a press conference Thursday, saying the etchings were ... 'of exceptional technical quality and visibility.' He said experts have praised the etchings as the 'most spectacular' in the Iberian peninsula. (more)

Spanish economy powers ahead
25 August 2016 - Spain's economy grew strongly in the second quarter as consumer spending stayed robust and demand for exports rose. An economic recovery has retained momentum through eight months without a functioning government, as the country has continued to notch up one of the fastest growth rates in the euro zone this year. (more)

US First Lady urges Spanish women to promote girls' learning
30 June 2016 - U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama on Thursday appealed to girls and young women in Spain to get involved in her global girls' education initiative, saying it's important girls are 'valued for their minds.' Mrs. Obama arrived in Spain from Morocco on Wednesday. She had started the three-nation tour to promote the 'Let Girls Learn' initiative in Liberia. (more)


Success of Maharishi's Programmes
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Study: Transcendental Meditation strengthens the immune system
17 August 2014 - Does practising the Transcendental Meditation technique help to keep you healthy? A group of researchers at Infanta Cristina Hospital in Spain have published a study which measures the effect of regular TM practice on the immune system. The researchers measured different subsets of leukocytes and lymphocytes--the cells in the blood which help to fight off viruses and bacteria. The scientists stated in their conclusion that the technique of meditation studied seems to have a significant effect on immune cells. (more)

Consciousness-Based Education: A solution to Europe's economic problems?
12 August 2013 - Through Consciousness-Based Education, it is possible for groups of students practising Transcendental Meditation to create a coherent effect in the surroundings, thus reducing social stress, commented a secondary-school teacher from Spain, at the conclusion of a recent course in this educational approach in the Netherlands. Referring to scientific research on such large, coherence-creating groups in different countries, he went on to say, 'That means that we can reduce crime, violence, and conflicts, and at the same time we can enliven creativity and creative intelligence in order to create new projects and even create new jobs.' (more)

'Transcending all knowledge' - St John of the Cross
11 July 2012 - A new essay explores the writings of St John of the Cross--one of the greatest figures in the Catholic church, and also one of the greatest poets in Spanish literature. St John describes experiences that are reminiscent of the experience of transcending during Transcendental Meditation--a state of quiet inner wakefulness and deep peace described by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi as a state of knowingness, the experience of pure knowledge, consciousness aware of itself alone. (more)

Spain: Conference inspires young Europeans to bring Transcendental Meditation to college students
24 September 2011 - During a recent one-week conference in Barcelona, Spain, young people from all over Europe who practise Transcendental Meditation were inspired to bring programmes for the individual and society, developed by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, to college students in their countries. The conference included presentations by experts in Maharishi's technologies of consciousness including filmmaker David Lynch, founder of the David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace. (more)

Maharishi University of Management signs student exchange pact with university in Madrid
25 March 2011 - A new student exchange agreement between Maharishi University of Management (MUM) and the European University of Madrid in Spain (UEM), a private university, will provide MUM students an opportunity to study abroad. It will also promote collaborative programmes of the two institutions in sustainable business and 'rotating university' projects in other countries, including South Africa. (more)

Transcendental Meditation, Consciousness-Based Education draw increasing interest in Spain, Portugal
6 October 2010 - Consciousness-Based Education is an area of increasing interest among educators in Spain and Portugal. The number of people learning the Transcendental Meditation Programme in these countries has also risen dramatically during the past year. (more)

Spain, Portugal: More people learning Transcendental Meditation, Consciousness-Based Education projects underway
7 August 2010 - Spain and Portugal are moving closer to national invincibility, with more people learning the Transcendental Meditation Programme, including in schools. (more)

Spain: Educators inspired by live demonstrations of EEG brain wave coherence during Transcendental Meditation
7 August 2010 - Dr Fred Travis, Director of the Center for Brain, Consciousness, and Cognition at Maharishi University of Management in the United States, recently presented to educators in three Spanish cities on how the Transcendental Meditation Programme creates coherent brain functioning. Audiences in Madrid, Barcelona, and Bilbao were especially interested in live demonstrations showing EEG brain wave coherence during the technique. (more)

Spain: Demand growing for Maharishi Vedic Organic Agriculture
16 December 2009 - Demand for products grown according to Maharishi Vedic Organic Agriculture is increasing in Spain and has already led to an increase in production. A new Spanish-language website on the topic has drawn over 1,000 visitors and many requests for information and products. (more)

Natural health care expanding in Spain: Maharishi Ayur-Veda spas, courses, products
14 December 2009 - Prevention-oriented natural health programmes are expanding significantly in Spain, provided by Maharishi Ayur-Veda, the world's oldest and most comprehensive system of natural medicine. Hundreds of spas plan to offer Maharishi Ayur-Veda spa treatments; Maharishi Ayur-Veda products will soon be widely available; and short courses on health topics including diet have been translated and will be offered in the near future. (more)


Flops
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Wildfires rage across northern Spain after unusual dry spell
28 December 2015 - Dozens of wildfires in northern Spain that erupted over the past week after an unusual dry spell. A spate of fires has been sweeping northern Spain for over a week now, an unusual phenomenon in regions that skirt the rough seas of the Bay of Biscay and are normally rainy, especially in winter. Spain is prone to wildfires during the summer months but generally in the more arid, hot southern regions or along the Mediterranean coast. (more)

Web of lies: How a Spanish tech star fooled the world
14 August 2014 - For nearly 10 years, Spanish internet company Let's Gowex SA said it was making money by providing public wi-fi in cities around the world. Most of the contracts, it now emerges, never existed. Instead Gowex chief Jenaro Garcia Martin used a series of tricks to fool company employees, investors, and regulators. The discovery of the deceit last month crippled the company and undermined credibility in Spain's stock market just as the country recovers from a four-year recession. The rise and collapse of what was once one of Spain's most celebrated start-ups is an exceptional chapter in Europe's faltering attempts to claim a share of a global technology industry largely in the hands of the United States and Asia. Gowex isn't the biggest corporate collapse of late in Spain, a country hard-hit by Europe's debt crisis. Several big firms have gone bust, and former executives of Pescanova SA, a fishing firm, are under investigation after the company said it had faked its accounts for years. But Gowex resonates because it had so many international investors and clients. (more)

Spain: Security expert says passenger jets at risk of cyber attack
4 August 2014 - Cybersecurity researcher Ruben Santamarta says he has figured out how to hack the satellite communications equipment on passenger jets through their WiFi and inflight entertainment systems -- a claim that, if confirmed, could prompt a review of aircraft security. The researcher said he discovered the vulnerabilities by 'reverse engineering' -- or decoding -- highly specialized software known as firmware, used to operate communications equipment made by Cobham Plc, Harris Corp, EchoStar Corp's Hughes Network Systems, Iridium Communications Inc and Japan Radio Co Ltd. In theory, a hacker could use a plane's onboard WiFi signal or inflight entertainment system to hack into its avionics equipment, potentially disrupting or modifying satellite communications, which could interfere with the aircraft's navigation and safety systems, Santamarta said. Santamarta published a 25-page research report in April that detailed what he said were multiple bugs in firmware used in satellite communications equipment made by Cobham, Harris, Hughes, Iridium, and Japan Radio Co for a wide variety of industries, including aerospace, military, maritime transportation, energy and communications. The report laid out scenarios by which hackers could launch attacks, though it did not provide the level of technical details that Santamarta said he will disclose at the upcoming conference. (more)

Infertility in Spanish pigs traced to plastics
12 June 2014 - A strange catastrophe struck Spain's pig farmers in the spring of 2010. On 41 farms across the country-each home to between 800 and 3,000 pigs-many sows suddenly ceased bearing young. On some farms, all the sows stopped reproducing. On others, those that did become pregnant produced smaller litters. When investigators examined the sows, they couldn't find anything wrong. Only one factor was common to all the farms and studs: The plastic bags used for semen storage all came from the same place. Investigating those bags has led Cristina NerĂ­n, an analytical chemist at the University of Zaragoza who studies packaging materials, to publish new research that traces the pigs' infertility to chemical compounds in the plastics. The implications could extend far beyond the farm. Some of the same chemicals found in the pigs' storage bags are routinely used in packaging food for humans and are known to migrate into food. (more)

Anti-austerity protest turns violent in Spanish capital
22 March 2014 - Hundreds of thousands of Spaniards rallied in Madrid on Saturday against poverty and EU-imposed austerity in a largely peaceful protest later marred by violent clashes in which police fired rubber bullets. Some protesters started to throw stones and bottles at the large numbers of riot police present and attacked cashpoints and hoardings. Central government representative Cristina Cifuentes said 19 protesters had been arrested and 50 police officers had been injured, one of them very badly, in the clashes. The so-called 'Dignity Marches' brought hundreds of thousands to the capital, according to estimates of Reuters witnesses. Travelling from all over Spain, they were protesting in support of more than 160 different causes, including jobs, housing, health, education, and an end to poverty. The OECD says the economic crisis has hit Spain's poor harder than in any other country in the group. (more)

Spain says police fired rubber bullets at migrants trying to swim to enclave
13 February 2014 - Spain said on Thursday border police had fired rubber bullets in an attempt to turn back around 200 migrants who tried to cross the frontier between Morocco and Spain's north African enclave Ceuta on 6 February. Several migrants from the group drowned in the Mediterranean trying to swim around a man-made breakwater that separates Moroccan and Spanish waters. The death toll rose to 12 on Thursday as Spanish police said they had found another body near the shore. They are still searching for victims. Every year thousands of Africans try to reach Europe via Spain's two north African enclaves, Ceuta and Melilla, either by swimming along the coast or climbing the triple walls lined with razor wire that mark the border with Morocco. Migrants who live rough in the mountains on the Moroccan side, waiting for an opportunity to rush the frontier, told Spanish media the police fired rubber bullets at them and sprayed them with tear gas as they tried to swim to land. (more)

Spain to tax for solar panel use
14 August 2013 - Spain's conservative government announced a reform of the energy system last month, including the 'support levy' on solar power in a country blessed with abundant sunlight. Imposed by decree, the reform aims to raise money for tackling a 26 billion euro debt to power producers which the state has built up over the years in regulating energy costs and prices. Under the constitution, the government can impose emergency measures by decree and has done so repeatedly since it came into office in late 2011. With Spain in economic crisis, power consumption is falling but the energy debt will continue growing by 4-5 billion euros a year unless the government takes action. Utilities such as Iberdrola, Endesa, and Gas Natural have attacked other revenue-raising measures in the reform. However, Spaniards who have generated power independently for their own homes under a system known as 'autoconsumo' are among the hardest hit by policies which they say punish, rather than encourage, energy efficiency. (more)

Spain threatens unilateral steps in Gibraltar dispute
9 August 2013 - Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy on Friday threatened unilateral measures in a spat with Gibraltar over fisheries although he also said he hoped for talks soon with Britain about the disputed territory. Tensions over Gibraltar -- a British overseas territory to which Spain lays claim -- flared up this month after Spain complained that an artificial reef being built by Gibraltar would block its fishing vessels. 'I hope that this doesn't go any further, but it's clear that Spain has to defend its national interest and that's what we're going to do,' Rajoy told reporters after a meeting with Spain's King Juan Carlos in Mallorca. Among the measures under consideration were a 50-euro ($67) fee for people entering or exiting Gibraltar, tax investigations of Gibraltarians with property in Spain, and restrictions on use of Spanish airspace for flights heading to Gibraltar. (more)

Spain studies retaliatory measures against Gibraltar - report
4 August 2013 - Spain is studying retaliatory measures against the British territory of Gibraltar in an escalating dispute over fishing grounds, Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo said in an interview published on Sunday. 'The party is over,' Garcia-Margallo told ABC newspaper, referring to years of softer policy on Gibraltar under the previous Socialist government. The minister said Spain was mulling a 50-euro border-crossing fee and tax investigations of thousands of Gibraltarians who own property in Spain. A border fee would affect tourists and Gibraltarians who cross the border for work. Spain was also considering closing airspace to planes heading for the airport in Gibraltar and changing rules to wring taxes from on-line gaming companies based in Gibraltar, he said. The latest tensions between Spain and the British territory began 10 days ago after Gibraltar boats began dumping blocks of concrete into the sea near the territory. Gibraltar said it was creating an artificial reef that would foster fish populations. Spain said the reef would block its fishing boats and ramped up border checks, creating long lines at the border between Spain and the territory. (more)

Spain's economic policy, corruption draws tens of thousands in protest
23 February 2013 - Tens of thousands of Spaniards marched through cities across the country on Saturday to protest deep austerity, the privatization of public services, and political corruption. Gathering under the banner of the 'Citizen Tide', students, doctors, unionists, young families, and pensioners staged rowdy but non-violent demonstrations as a near five-year economic slump shows no sign of recovery and mass unemployment rises. 'I'm here to add my voice. They're cutting where they shouldn't cut; health, education ... basic services. And the latest corruption scandal is just the tiniest tip of a very large iceberg,' said Alberto, 51, an account administrator for a German multinational in Madrid, who preferred not to give his surname. (more)

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