Spain - Europe's Rising Star

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Case Details:

Case Code : ECOA103
Case Length : 12 Pages
Period : 2003
Organization : -
Pub Date : 2003
Teaching Note :Not Available
Countries : Spain, Europe
Industry : -

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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In three decades, a rather poor, rather closed country, its business and political enterprise alike tied down by an outdated philosophy, has become a middling rich one. Minds and markets have opened. This has generated money and money is an astounding agent of change. If Spanish society today looks much like one other in Western Europe, that is not just because fascism went away. It is because money arrived.

- The Economist, 23rd November 2000.


Spain, the second largest country in the European Union (EU) after France was also the second most popular tourist destination in the world1.

For a major part of the 20th century, Spain had been one of the poorer countries in Western Europe. But by the late 1990s, it had rapidly emerged as an industrial powerhouse.

Spain's economic reforms started hesitantly and accelerated when the country became a member of the European Economic Community (EEC)2 in 1986. Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar's government, which came to power in March 1996, maintained the tempo of reforms.

It reduced government spending significantly and emphasized privatization. Stakes in Telefonica (Telecom), Endesa (Energy), Argentaria (Banking) and Repsol (Energy) were divested. Laws were amended to make the labor markets more flexible...

Excerpts >>

1] World Tourism Organization Report, 2002

2] European Economic Community (EEC), organization established (1958) by treaty between Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and West Germany (now Germany); it was known informally as the common Market. The EEC was the most significant of the three treaty organizations that were consolidated in 1967 to form the European Community (EC; known since the ratification [1993] of the Maastricht treaty as the European Union). It worked for the free movement of labor and capital, the abolition of trusts and cartels, and the development of joint and reciprocal policies on labor, social welfare, agriculture, transport, and foreign trade.


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