19 Nov, 2014 @ 18:15
1 min read

European Commission tell Spain to sort out border trouble with Gibraltar

A SCATHING letter sent to the Spanish government by the European Commission has lambasted the country’s ‘unjustified’ actions at the Spain-Gibraltar border.  

Madrid has been set a deadline of next summer to complete works at the frontier, following EU inspections in July which witnessed ‘deliberate delaying tactics’ at the border.

The Gibraltarian government has reiterated its plea for a permanent EU presence to monitor the situation, following the announcement.

A spokesperson for the Gibraltar government said: “The irony is that thousands of Spanish workers have also been inflicted by these lengthy and unnecessary delays.

“Cross-border trade between Gibraltar and the Spanish hinterland has been damaged by the actions of the Spanish central Government and the quality of life of thousands of ordinary people has been disrupted.”

“The Gibraltar Government considers that the border should become a shining example of the European principle of freedom of movement.”

The European Commission has also ordered the Spanish government to reduce vehicle checks at the border so that they never exceed 50% of passing traffic.

To reduce or abolish checks altogether when exiting Spain and entering Gibraltar and to report to the commission on a monthly basis.


Rob Horgan

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  1. A Scathing letter from the EU!
    I,d love to be in a fly on the wall in the office that recieved
    that letter with loads of Spanish officials rolling around the floor with laughter!

  2. Have you noticed how many corruption cases have recently surfaced and continue to surface in Spain? Somehow, I sense that the powers who pour millions into helping Spain’s ailing economy have had enough.
    This is not the Spanish government showing us it is cleaning up it’s act. This is the Spanish government being told to clean up it’s act or the tap will be closed.
    Have you also noticed how quiet P.P. politicians have become regarding Gibraltar? Mr Margallo said, when coming into office, that the party was over for Gibraltar. As far as I can see, the party is bigger than ever and growing by the day.
    British diplomacy is subtle, impassive but, eventually, highly effective.

  3. Hopefully the citizens of the UK will vote to leave the EU soon.

    When this happens, the UK and the EG (Empire of Gibraltar) will be free to develop as beacons of law and order, where people live in peace and quiet and prosperity. You don´t need the corrupt EU!!

    Please hold the vote soon !!

  4. I think the article should have said “affected” and not ” inflicted” but never mind! My take is that most Spanish people are more concerned with keeping a roof over their heads and putting food on the table than this issue.

    It’s usually a sign of instability when sword rattling begins a la The Falklands.

  5. border controls will be kept till you stop smuggling tobacco into la linea as is the norm there
    As far economic woes, the spanish economy is growing faster than that of the countrries in the uerozone , so put that into pipe into your mouth and smoke it¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡

  6. Wow ‘bert’ that is a fabulously incorrect statement on your part, and written in amazingly poor English. I think you should stay on late in school on Monday, and get a few extra English lessons.

    Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

    But then I guess you are too young eh?

  7. Bert’s not wrong about Spain’s economy growing faster than the Eurozone, but then again the average stalagtite grows faster than the Eurozone, so it’s hardly a claim to be proud of…

  8. keep it up Bert, you are doing a great job in making the Spanish look even more stupid over this.

    If you look at the coverage it is mainly the spanish who are carrying out the “smuggling” to sell to their “poor” compatriots in Spain. It happens in our own village through the various “kioskas”.

    Horlicks is normally a good nighttime drink for tired 10 year olds

  9. @ PJ

    You need to be really stupid If you don’t realize that the reason there is smuggling between Gibraltar and the rest of Spain is because alcohol and tabacco are priced to encourage people to cross the gate into Gibraltar to purchase alcohol and tabacco and then smuggle them back into Spain. All the Government of Gibraltar needs to do to stop smuggling, is to set similar prices as in the rest of Spain, it is that simple.

    One of the main sources of income for Gibraltar comes from having thousands of citizens cross into Gibraltar to purchase tabacco and alcohol every day.

    The Spanish Government needs to get really tough on Gibraltar!! and put an end to this bizarre little beacon of corruption, smuggling, money laundering and human decadence.

    Merry Christmas and a very happy New Year!

  10. Ciudadanos, the fact is the vast majority of tobacco taken over the border between Gibraltar and Spain is totally legal, within the duty-free allowance of those bringing it across. Gibraltar gets millions of visitors a year.

    The amount of tobacco smuggled illegally over the border is vanishingly small. A tiny drop in the ocean compared to the tobacco smuggled into Spain through Spanish ports, such as Algeciras, Cadiz, Valencia and Barcelona. On top of this, cigarettes sold in Gibraltar are manufactured in the EU, mostly in Spain. The cigarettes which come into Spain through Barcelona, Valencia and Algeciras is not only contraband but also counterfeit. That’s before you even factor in the other stuff smuggled into the EU via Spain, not to mention drugs – the Costa de la Luz is awash with hash from Morocco and the rias of Galicia are teaming with boats bringing in cocaine from South America. Spain is one big leaky sieve. OLAF knows this very well.

    You can keep trying to hide these facts with your Gibraltar smokescreen, but people are starting to see through this, especially the EU Commission.

  11. What about, ‘All the Government of Spain needs to do to stop smuggling is to set comparative prices to Gibraltar. It is that simple.’ Or is it………?

  12. British tourists buy their tobacco on the Spanish costas because it’s cheaper. That’s OK.

    French people cross the border at la Jonquera to by cheaper tobacco. That’s OK.

    Spanish people buy it in Andorra. That’s OK too.

    So what’s the problem with Spanish people buying in Gibraltar? It’s a feeble excuse for provoking queues at the border.

  13. The Treaty of Utrecht clearly states that there should be no commercial relations between Gibraltar and the rest of Spain while Gibraltar remains a crown colony of the UK.

    When the UK leaves the EU , we can proceed to close the border crossing to comply with the treaty.

    I wish you all a happy New Year !

  14. Ciudadanos,
    The Treaty of Utrecht also stated that Jews were not to be allowed to live in Gibraltar. Really, don’t you think that the world has moved on since then?
    The right of communities to decide their future is a modern day concept that seems beyond you.
    The present PP government constantly accuses Gibraltar and its citizens of the most base acts such as money laundering, tobacco/drug/weapons smuggling etc. But where is the proof. Even when the secret accounts of your corrupt politicians are published Gibraltar is never named.
    Why can’t you just accept Gibraltar is a legally thriving community that puts your country to shame.
    Hope the new year brings you prosperity, less unemployment, no corrupt politicians or royalty, less poverty, less debt and an independent Pais Vasco/Catalunya.

  15. Ciudadanos, the Treaty of Utrecht is trumped by subsequent treaties. In this case the Treaty of Lisbon, also known as TFEU. I suggest you read all of it and pay special attention to Titles II and IV:


  16. Well done, Ciudadanos. I really love your kind hearted wishes. It reflects such a warm heart. Happy New Year mate and may your obsession with Gibraltar not affect your peace of mind. It must be frustrating wishing something so much yet knowing the only thing you can do about it is rant and rave.

  17. Not necessarily Ciudadanos. If the UK leaves the EU, it will negotiate that with the EU Commission and not Spain. The agreement is certain to include keeping the Gibraltar land frontier open. There will be absolutely nothing Spain can do about that (except leaving the EU itself – good luck with that!). The UK holds just about all the bargaining power. The EU will be on the back foot from the start.

  18. Your “llanito” views will be your downfall. When the time comes, the UK will sell you down the river. The UK needs to lookout for UK interests worldwide which may or may not include the disputed colony of Gibraltar.

    The UN has listed Gibratar as a territory that needs to be decolonized and the UK accepts in principle, that due to the treaty with Spain, it is impossible for Gibratar to become an independant nation with Spain’s stated interest to regain sovereignty over of castle and port waters of Gibraltar.

    Thanks to Picardo and his “concrete block dropping hobby”, Spain has reacted late but in time.

    As we say in Spanish ” Hemos visto las orejas al lobo”.

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