Barcelona International Community Day to welcome and bring together city’s diverse talent again
Fair will take place on October 22 in capital's Maritime Museum and is free of charge
The Maritime Museum, located in the old Royal Shipyards, will play host to the Barcelona International Community Day on Saturday 22 October for its ninth edition. This event-fair will bring together companies and organisations offering services, products and initiatives for people who have recently moved to Barcelona to live and work in the city, and includes a programme of activities, workshops and conferences on topics of interest to this community.
The gathering has become the main welcome and networking event for all those who have chosen the city as a place to settle. Its slogan is 'You feel Barcelona, you make Barcelona' and the idea is to highlight the richness that the international community brings to the city, and its contribution to making
The venue will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Entry is free of charge. You can get your ticket by registering online at barcelona.cat/internationalcommunityday.
Barcelona International Community Day has been organised by Barcelona City Council through its City Promotion Department for the past nine years, establishing itself as the main welcome event and a must-attend gathering for members of the international community who live and work in the city, as well as for anyone looking to connect with this group which brings so much diversity and richness to Barcelona.
The fair will feature nearly 80 exhibitors, including companies, public bodies and associations, distributed throughout different stands and information points.
Around a quarter of the exhibitors (26.4%) will be taking part for the first time.
Attendees will find specialised resources and services to meet the needs of expats who have recently moved to Barcelona. Representatives from a variety of sectors will be there to discuss property, relocation, talent management, legal and financial consultancy, insurance and medical services.
Attendees will also find public and private cultural and social organisations offering products, services and initiatives to help them enjoy and integrate into the city.
The education sector will also be represented thanks to stands from various business schools and a showroom of several schools from the Barcelona area offering international curricula or qualifications.
The more than 60 scheduled activities, with around 100 speakers, revolve around three main themes: settling in the city, with information on legal and tax issues and how the education and health systems work; doing business or pursuing a professional career; and enjoying and socialising in the city, with dynamic networking events to help people build personal and professional networks.
Barcelona Activa’s resources for job seekers and business start-ups will also be presented and explained in detail, as well as the permanent municipal support and welcome service for newly-arrived international talent, the Barcelona International Welcome Desk, which provides personalised information and guidance.
Barcelona International Community Day will therefore offer not only a space for newcomers to feel welcomed and meet up with others, but will also help to bring together the biggest concentration of talent, entrepreneurship, ideas and projects arriving in the city from abroad.
The event also has a fun and family-oriented side to it. Throughout the day, there will be a play centre with various activities for children, and in the Maritime Museum Garden there will be live performances by artists from different backgrounds: Taiko Japanese traditional drums, irish music or Indian dances, among others.
Plus, as a new feature this year, the day will end with a big party from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., bringing together exhibitors, speakers and attendees. The party will feature American folk music, DJ entertainment, some giveaways and a final toast with everyone present.
As every year, the programme of activities will include the participation of six hosts, all professionals from various countries who have settled in Barcelona to pursue their professional endeavours. In addition to participating in the event on 22 October, each of them will take part in a video interview to explain why they chose Barcelona and how the city has helped them to realise their professional goals. This year’s hosts are young Congolese entrepreneur Neema Bal Nelly; Mexico-born Amilcar Vargas, who is the current director of World Heritage at Casa Batlló; Shreyashee Nag, a dancer and choreographer from India who has founded her own dance school and company in Barcelona; US expat Victor Horcasitas, editor of Barcelona Metropolitan magazine, the leading guide to the city for English speakers; Bibiana Cunningham, an entrepreneur from Slovakia; and Emrah Ulucakar, the manager of a multinational in the agri-food sector who came to Barcelona from Turkey two years ago.
Organisation and support
Barcelona Activa offers Barcelona City Council support in the organisation of Barcelona International Community Day, along with various other organisations, entities and professionals who help to make its organisation and dissemination possible. It also has the outstanding support of Banc Sabadell as a premium sponsor, as well as the sponsorship and collaboration of ERES Relocation Services (workers’ international mobility management), MAPFRE (insurance and medical and health services) and Page Personnel (international human resources consultancy).
Also supporting the event this year are the Association of Independent Private Schools of Catalonia (EPIC), the Old Irish Pub and the children’s play centre Just for Kids.
La Vanguardia will be the event’s media partner, with the support of several other collaborating media.
Barcelona International Community Day 2021
In 2021, the event drew 3,678 people to the Maritime Museum. Of these, 64% were attending for the first time, while the rest were repeat visitors. The large international event attracted students, entrepreneurs, members of research teams, business people, artists and families.
In terms of the diversity, 59.1% of those who attended were from abroad and 40.9% were Spanish nationals. There were people from 87 different countries, with Italy, France, the UK and the US as the four countries of origin with the most visitors. Sixty per cent of those who came had been living in Barcelona for less than five years.
In total, 51 activities were held, with 96 speakers and experts and 73 exhibitors. Satisfaction among those who attended was very high, at 8.6 out of 10.
The figures of attendees just fell short of the last pre-pandemic edition, in 2019, when over 4,000 people took part in the event.
Barcelona welcomes and invigorates international talent: a 360º plan
Barcelona’s diverse, intercultural spirit is reflected in the fact that currently, 29% of the city’s residents, or 481,657 people, were born abroad. The city is home to people from 176 different countries, and the main nationalities represented are Italian, Pakistani and Chinese.
Of the expats living in Barcelona, 41.8% have a university education or a higher education certificate. The city offers multiple opportunities to facilitate the professional and personal growth of all foreigners setting up in the city with a view to living their lives here.
This large, dynamic international community has all the potential to enrich our society and economy. From the perspective of economic advancement, this is very valuable because:
- Their talent, work, investments, companies, professional projects, and economic and commercial activities help to generate wealth.
- They help to improve competitiveness and productivity, producing new ideas, techniques and innovations.
- They are the first point of contact with new investors, entrepreneurs or professionals in their home countries: they help to make investment decisions and attract talent to our city.
- They are the economic ambassadors of Barcelona in their home countries.
Bearing in mind the positive contribution that they make, taking care of our international community is important, regardless of whether they have arrived recently or are more established in the city.
This is why, for a number of years now, the City Promotion Department at Barcelona City Council has had a plan in place to attract, welcome, enhance the loyalty and invigorate international talent, the focal point of which is the Barcelona International Welcome website.
Barcelona International Welcome
Barcelona International Welcome is the municipal website for foreigners who want to come to live and work in Barcelona. It offers practical information for settling in the city, a detailed explanation of mandatory and other important procedures to carry out, and a calendar of activities throughout the year to help these people develop their full potential.
Since November last year, the information and resources of Barcelona International Welcome have been available in the form of face-to-face, personalised assistance at the Barcelona International Welcome Desk, a pioneering international talent welcome service in Spain that makes it easier for people to come to Barcelona by offering personalised assistance, information, guidance and help with paperwork in several languages.
(Catalan News is not liable to third parties for any information in this statement)