markets

Half of Catalans consumed ecologically friendly food during 2015

July 20, 2016 12:46 PM | ACN / Sergio Segura

More and more people in Catalonia are turning to ecologically friendly food. According to the Perception and Consumption of Organic Food barometer, half of all Catalans consumed ecologically friendly food during 2015. On the way towards an ecologically and environmentally friendly city, Barcelona City Hall is promoting some initiatives to make Barcelona a more ecological city in many facets like health, sustainability, trade and social welfare. Green Markets are integrated into the new municipal policies. The aim is to promote small- and medium-sized local and ecologically friendly Catalan producers within a maximum radius of 150 km around Barcelona. The intention of the City Hall is to spread the campaign to six markets this year and, bit by bit, to transform the whole network of markets in Barcelona into an example of respect for the environment. 

Catalonia fourth region in Europe in terms of foreign investment

April 4, 2016 03:12 PM | ACN

The region which attracted the fourth-most foreign investment in Europe in 2015 was Catalonia. According to the Financial Times’ FDi Markets report, the Catalan economy attracted €5.224 billion throughout 2015, the highest figure of the data series, which sets Catalonia as the leading region in the Western European area. The sector which attracted most foreign investment was ICT, which according to Catalan Ministry for Business and Knowledge, Jordi Baiget, proves the “traction effect” of the Mobile World Congress for the Catalan economy. Baiget explained this good result as being due to Catalonia’s geographic situation and the neighbouring markets, as well as to its qualified workforce and its solid, diversified and innovative business network. In March, the Financial Times report FDi European Cities and Regions of the future 2016/2017 recognised Barcelona as the best city in Europe for foreign investment.

Eco-villages in Catalonia: the rise of new green models in times of crisis

June 19, 2015 04:57 PM | Valentina Marconi

An increasing number of people are fed up with living in concrete jungles. Many think of the countryside as a solution to problems such as stress, a low-paying job and pollution. Due to the start of the economic crisis, this phenomenon boomed, with people beginning to look for an 'alternative way of life' or, at least, new opportunities. Catalonia and the whole of Spain are no exception to this. Here, moving (back) to the countryside nowadays looks like an attractive option to many, especially to young unemployed graduates. However, sustainable agriculture initiatives and the like are the 'junior division' compared to more complex social, cultural and ecological experiments: the eco-villages. Coming in different shapes and sizes, their members share resources and spaces, grow their own food and cover in a sustainable way the energy demand of the buildings they live in. With different missions and features, many eco-villages can be traced back to one or two decades ago and could teach a lot to newcomers.

Barcelona Southern Europe’s most attractive city to invest in, according to EY

May 27, 2015 09:26 PM | ACN

The Catalan capital is Europe's 8th most attractive city to invest in and the highest-ranked city located in the southern part of the continent, according to the international consultancy firm Ernst & Young. London, Paris, Berlin, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Brussels and Munich come first in the European ranking and are followed by the Catalan capital, ahead of Madrid, which comes in 10th position. EY highlights the fact that Barcelona has attracted "enough" international business projects to confirm its place among Europe's top 10 most attractive cities for foreign investment. Catalonia ended 2014 with 108 direct foreign investment projects, a 27% increase on 2013 figures. These projects created 7,089 new jobs. EY stressed that none of the 7 cities ahead of Barcelona were able to transform direct investment into the creation of so many new jobs. London was the closest contender, creating 3,470 jobs, half of that of the Catalan capital.

Catalan banking group Sabadell has already bought 81.23% shares of British TSB bank

May 11, 2015 04:47 PM | ACN

Last April, Banc Sabadell filed a takeover offer on 100% of the shares of the UK lender TSB, partially owned by LLoyds. On Monday, the Catalan bank announced it had already exceeded the 75% minimum bid of the takeover offer, reaching 81.23% of TSB shares. However, this percentage is still likely to increase in the upcoming days, since there are 14 remaining days till the end of the takeover's acceptance period. In order to fund the transaction, the Catalan corporation will carry out a €1.61 billion capital increase (€1,607 million). Current shareholders have a preference call in this capital increase. Banc Sabadell, is one of the few banks to emerge stronger from a financial crisis that has redrawn Spain’s banking sector. Unlike many of its Spanish rivals, the bank is in good shape reporting a 50% increase in annual profits at the end of 2014 to €371.7 million. Since 2007, it has doubled in size and is now Spain’s 5th largest bank. It achieved this mainly through an energetic programme of acquisitions in Spain and abroad.