The expert comments are brief 900- to 1,500-word pieces produced by the Elcano Royal Institute's analysts as an immediate response to international events relevant to Spain.
Each time a terrorist attack is perpetrated, jihadism is to be thought of not just as a national security problem but also as a challenge to the very fabric of open societies.
As a new challenge to its democratic existence, Turkey is going to a constitutional referendum on April 16th, with a heavily polarised society. It is widely questioned if the referendum will be ‘free’ and ‘fair’ under the current state of emergency.
Adding to concerns about terrorism, the handling of the refugee crisis and existing economic risks, there is the delicate management of the UK’s departure, the unpredictability of president Trump and, above all, an electoral calendar that offers no let-up.
Spain’s exports of goods rose in 2016 for the seventh year running, defying expectations that they would tail off as the economy recovers and domestic consumption picks up.
In an era in which authoritarian populists have already started to cooperate, partnerships between democratic actors are more necessary than ever. A ‘democratic partnership’ between the EU and the UK would be a win-win situation for both parties.
Although the Mercosur-EU agreement is a first generation FTA, mainly focused on tariff reductions, it is also necessary to highlight its geo-political significance, and potential.
No one knows what US President-elect Trump will do in office. Will he cut a geopolitical deal with Russian President Putin? Will he keep American soldiers in Europe? Or worse, even rip up the North Atlantic treaty?
While Italy is still more economically powerful than Spain, it displays more structural imbalances and declining trends.
The institutional division between the European Parliament, the Commission and the Council regarding Turkey has become even more visible over the last months. Both Member States and institutions are divided on the steps that are required to be taken.
A deal between Putin and Trump would not change the underlying reality. It is not Western influence which undermines the Kremlin’s influence in the former Soviet space but its failure to deliver the kind of governance people want.