The Word on the Street

International Edition - June 2012


News and Information from Spain


Welcome to the June issue of 'The Word on the Street'. Your monthly news and information from Spain provided by Ábaco Asesores. In a couple of columns we hope to keep you in touch with the news, events and just a little bit of gossip.

Denia marina port boats, Alicante

Mojacar village in the sunshine

News flash for Residents

Spanish pharmacies are now advising customers that the new prescription co-payment scheme will begin on 1st July. Some details are still unclear, however, we have been informed that a resident tax declaration will be needed as proof of income for prescription charges. So those people who have been visiting our fifth floor over the past couple of months can feel releaved that they should have the paper work in place to prove their income.

Corvera airport (Murcia)

There's hardly a week goes by without an update. In this article on Tumbit, we hear that there is still optimism that the airport will be functioning by October. However, this proposal is still overshadowed by issues such as military airspace and compensation payments to San Javier:

Murcia Today even reports rumours that the airport is up for sale:

And other sources suggest that even the delayed predicted opening of Summer 2013 is unlikely to happen. So, once more, it's watch this space.

Illegal homes

We had a request from a newsletter reader for an update on the illegal builds in Almeria. Here is one news story that throws some light on the current situation. It does give an indication of just how far the problem extends. Of course, behind each individual story is a tragedy of high hopes and great disappointment.

Counterfeit cops

In some regions we are aware that the local police have been reigning in the illegal street sellers. You know the ones. You've just sat down on the front, order your long, cool drink and up they come wanting to know if you'd like to buy their 'very nice' sunglasses.

And it's not just on the coast the 'looky, looky' men loiter. If you should take a trip to the Sierra Nevada you might be forgiven for thinking they have followed you there - this time they're selling skiing goggles of course.

For some they are only trying to make a living, for others, they're a complete nuisance - people who trade illegally taking custom away from more deserving traders.

Whether people who buy 10€ Gucci handbags really believe them to be the genuine article is another matter. And would they really opt for the 1,000€ version if the street sellers weren't around?

However, just in case you would like some guidance on the matter of separating your Calvin Klein from your Kalvin Clein, a handy little leaflet has been issued by Torrevieja townhall, 'Cómo evitar las falsificaciones'.

It's top 10 pieces of advice in relation to fake goods consists of:

1. only buy products directly from the manufacturer or shop

2. beware of any offer that seems to be too good to be true

3. check the advertising - are there grammatical errors and spelling mistakes?

4. look for the name and information about the manufacturer

5. avoid buying products that are being sold informally

6. remember - counterfeit goods might breach health and safety standards

7. pay attention to perfume and cosmetic imitations - their contents can cause allergic reactions

8. electronic and IT software and hardware can create difficulties with the rest of your network

9. Look for the mark 'CE' which indicates that the product complies with EU rules

10. lastly, don't just go for the cheapest - fakes lack quality, safety and durability


Ábaco update

We've reached the resident deadline!

At least temporarily. The deadline for the resident tax declarations is now upon us. It has been a very busy time in the office and all our tax advisors would like to thank our clients who helped them get the returns out on time.

You can still submit your resident tax declaration or return but there will be a fine. As you might expect, the later you leave it the greater the fine will be. This article explains why it's important to make your resident tax declaration and what you might expect the fine to be:

We will keep you informed of any additional information we receive.

Even more about prescriptions

'Typically Spanish' have just published an article that lists the drugs and medications that will no longer be available with any discount. Patients requiring these drugs will have to pay the full cost. The list includes treatments for:

- Constipation and diarrhoea
- Hemarrhoids
- Psoriasis
- Cognitive impairment associated with age

There are 456 medictions included in the definitive list.

Well done Spain!

The next issue of the Ábaco magazine includes an article about the Spanish health service. The overall impression of those foreigners who do have to use its hospitals, is positive. The two articles below reinforce this view. They are each written from a different perspective - maternity and transplants - but the overall message is that here there is something for Spain to be proud of.

In this article we hear about the excellent maternity services in Barcelona and get a slightly different view point of the recession.

In this one, we learn of the ground-breaking research and practice in the field of transplants. It also encourages us to consider why Spanish families are so much more likely to allow organ donation at the point of death. A key difference which can mean life or death to others.

Online papers

Online newspapers can be a real godsend when you live in one place and want to know what's happening in another.

If you own property in Spain and holiday here regularly, it is nice to be able to dip into your local free paper and keep in touch. We've done a quick summary of three online papers but we know there are many more out there.

Here's our breakdown but we'd very much like to hear from anyone living or with property in other regions of Spain - which online paper takes your fancy when you're thirsting for a spot of news?

The courier

Pages: 47

Head office: Agua Nuevas, Alicante

Download from:

Features include: Grumpy Old Gran, Local Look-in

Recommended for: UK headlines and Spanish Press

The euro-weekly

Pages: 111

Head office: Costa del Sol (also issues in the Costa Blanca North and South, Mallorca. Axarquia and Almeria)

Download from:

Features include: Finance, business and legal, controversial Leapy Lee

Recommended for: short, pithy articles

The round town news

Pages: 73

Head office: La Nucia Alicante

Download from:

Features include: Watts in Britain, RTN Mail

Recommended for: well of course, our own column in RTN Money - don't miss it!


Tapas or tortilla? It's another 'top ten'

What do you enjoy most about Spanish food? Is it those tasty little tapas dishes or a great steaming plate of paella? Spanish food is colourful and often very simple but tasty. In, they've selected their top ten Spanish food as:

1. Sangria (we'll allow some journalistic licence on this one)

2. Paella (definitely deserves a mention)

3. Tapas (not one, but a whole selection of food, or mouthfuls of it)

4. Tortilla (have had some rather bland examples of this but love the concept)

5. Chorizo (a personal favourite - love it in pasta too)

6. Chuletillas de cordero (lamb chops with garlic - not had this one)

7. Gazpacho (cold tomato soup - you either love it or you don't)

8. Espinacas a la catalana (Spinach with pine nuts in a salad - not sure about this one)

9. Pulpo a la Gallega (octopus - not everyone's cup of tea)

10. Patatas Bravas - (spicy little potatoes that are generally popular all round)

The article is here, but it's not to everyone's taste either:

Mud, mud, glorious mud!

And there's certainly plenty of it in San Pedro del Pinatar, Murcia:

However, this isn't the only place where you can indulge in the luxury of a salty dip and mud bath. The salt lakes or salinas on the outskirts of Montesinos, Alicante also play host to the avid bather covering him/ herself in mud and taking a dip.

If you do choose to take up this form of leisure activity, certainly in the salt lakes, make sure your feet are well-clad. The layers of salt on the bed of the lake can be quite painful to walk on.

So why do it? The mud contains a number of minerals including calcium, magnesium, potassium and fluoride and is recommended for conditions such as arthritis and skin complaints.

White houses and blue sky in the mediterranean coast of Mojácar

White houses and blue skies in the Mediterranean coast of Mojácar, Almería

The Spanish press and the economic crisis

An interesting article translated from El Pais provides a reflective account of the current crisis from a Spanish newsdesk point of view. Events have overtaken some of the content of this article. However, the issue about national interest v. the interests of the community is very much a core dilemma facing the whole European union.

The beautiful game again

Euro 2012 might be nearly over but as far as Poland is concerned its legacy will go on. We came across this interesting article translated from the Polish press that reflects how their press, at least, have seen the opportunity to host this competition. We thought it was also rather a pleasing read if you're Irish. No mention of the English fans out there…

Morning on Calpe beach

Sandy beaches and warm temperatures in Mojácar beach, Almería


Ábaco Asesores: (+34) 96 670 3748

facebook twitter linked in