SPAIN’S far-right Vox political party has proposed a bill to the Spanish Congress that would see citizenship through residency take 15 years instead of the current ten years.
The proposed bill is targeted at North African immigrants and the far-right party are attempting to make the process of acquiring Spanish nationality more difficult. If successfully passed, the bill would directly affect British expats as well as other non-Europeans.
Vox leader Santiago Abascal has stated that the proposals are intended to guard Spanish nationality like a “treasure”. The party is reacting against a marked increase in nationalised citizens in recent years. Vox has also made proposals that include banning nationality applications from those with criminal records- either in Spain or their country of origin.
Stipulations proposed include a higher language standard and proof of an official certificate to show the applicants level of Spanish. Another stipulation being considered is that people would be forced give up their other nationalities to take up Spanish citizenship.
Vox say that they want to make it compulsory for citizenship applicants to “present a public document issued by the authorities of their country of origin that certifies the loss of the previous nationality”.
Spain is still the British holidaymaker’s preferred destination and thousands have chosen the country for their retirement. During the pandemic, those applying to live in Spain were hindered by the crisis restrictions. Brexit has also made it more difficult to relocate to Spain for UK residents. However, Marketing Director at Taylor Wimpey España, Marc Pritchard, said he had seen figures of second home reservations rise for the last three months, and that the “British appetite for Spanish second homes is well and truly alive once more.”