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Heavy rains cause flooding in parts of Europe; country alert

The storms caused heavy flooding in parts of western and central Europe overnight, and a man swept away by a raging stream in eastern Germany was still missing on Wednesday.

Firefighters resumed their search for the man in the town of Joehstadt, Saxony, on Wednesday morning. German news agency dpa reported that he tried to protect his property from rising waters when he went missing.

Firefighters in the city of Hagen in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia rescued several drivers whose vehicles got stuck in a flooded underpass. Videos on social media showed streets in the western German city filled with knee-deep water and others buried by landslides.

A fallen tree trapped a woman in the German town of Mettmann, and responders had to hold her head high to prevent her from drowning in the rising waters until firefighters could free her. Residents of the nearby town of Erkrath were warned not to shower or use their washing machines as the rain overloaded the local sewage system.

Bavaria’s Hof County issued a disaster alert on Tuesday evening as basements filled with water, trees were uprooted and some areas lost electricity overnight. German weather service DWD said the region recorded 80 liters (over 21 gallons) of rain per square meter in the span of 12 hours.

German government spokesman Steffen Seibert called the images of the areas hardest hit by the floods terrible.

Although not all local events, floods or incidents are linked to climate change, many scientists tell us that the frequency, intensity and regularity with which this occurs is a consequence of climate change, said Seibert.

DWD meteorologists predicted further extreme storms in western and central Germany through Thursday, with maximum precipitation of up to 200 liters per square meter.

In the neighboring Czech Republic, firefighters have received 800 calls regarding incidents ranging from falling trees to flooded basements. A highway connecting the capital, Prague, in the east of the country partly flooded at night. Thousands of homes remained without electricity on Wednesday.

Mud inundated houses in some towns in eastern Belgium as sustained rains hit the hills of the Ardennes hard. The tourist center of Spa, close to the famous Formula 1 circuit, could not bear the water that flowed from the surrounding hills which turned the streets into rivers.

Cars piled on top of each other and basements were flooded, but no serious injuries were reported.

The Belgian meteorological institute issued a red alert on Wednesday for the area around Liège, some 100 km (60 miles) east of Brussels, which is expected to receive more rain in one day than the region would normally receive. in an entire summer month. The rain is expected to last until Friday.

Dutch authorities have warned that heavy rains in the southern province of Limburg could turn streams into dangerously fast torrents and urged the public to stay away. Boat owners have been advised to stay away from the Meuse due to the strong currents and debris carried downstream.

Dutch media showed people being rescued on Tuesday from a historic mill in the Netherlands partially submerged by floodwaters estimated to be 1.5 meters (5 feet) high.

Swollen rivers were expected to overflow into their floodplains later in the week, which is unusual in the summer. This happens more often in the spring when rivers such as the Rhine and Meuse rise due to melting snow in European hills and mountains.

In Switzerland, the authorities have raised the flood warning for Lake Lucerne to the highest level and banned all navigation.

The French national meteorological service issued warnings for five regions in the northeast of the country on Wednesday. Region. Much of France has experienced an unusually cool and humid summer so far.

Meanwhile, parts of southeastern Europe experienced a heat wave. Temperatures in Albania and neighboring Kosovo reached 35-37 degrees Celsius (95-99 F) on Wednesday.

No deaths have been reported from the heat wave so far. Authorities are urging the public, especially children and the elderly, to stay at home during the day.

(Only the title and image of this report may have been reworked by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)

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ECA details the scale of the challenge facing European land-based casinos

The European Casino Association detailed the “devastating” effect of COVID-19 on the region’s gaming industry, saying the land-based casino industry has suffered the brunt of the impact.

Detailing the results of a member survey, the association says European casinos were closed on average 136 days in 2020, with the vast majority not having been able to accommodate customers in 2021 so far.

It is added that 70% of casinos in Europe remain closed with exceptions, such as Luxembourg, Spain and Monaco, having reopened in 2021 under specific restrictions, while the most affected casinos, such as in Sweden, have been closed. for a whole year. .

Other findings indicate that European land operators have seen their revenues fall by more than 50% in the past year and that the majority of ECA members do not have a clear timeline for the official reopening of their businesses. .

Employment in the sector is also expected to be seriously affected, with the 900 casinos of ECA members employing more than 70,000 before the pandemic, a figure expected to rise to 50,000.

“This is the deepest trough the European land-based casino industry has ever seen. The financial impact of the pandemic on the land-based casino industry has been extreme, and these figures show the economic realities of COVID-19 on the European land-based casino industry, ”said Per Jaldung, President of the ECA.

“Some casinos have closed permanently and many casino employees have lost their jobs. We are under no illusions that the industry may soon return to “business as usual”. We are, in fact, very far from the status quo ”.

Restricted hours of operation, maximum occupancy and amenity limitations, social distancing protocols, restricted gaming offerings, protective measures including plexiglass, masks and on-site testing are just a few of the barriers that l The land-based casino business is currently facing.

Country-to-country variations in restrictions and mandates have also been compounded by regional variations within national borders, with these restrictions seen as the next major challenge for the industry.

“Customers want to visit the casinos again,” added Hermann Pamminger, Secretary General of the ECA. “The easing and tightening of many bottlenecks in 2020 demonstrated the ability of the land sector to resume operations in a safe and responsible manner.

“Customer registration has enabled quick and convenient social distancing measures, and casinos have implemented comprehensive hygiene initiatives, far exceeding local requirements, ensuring our customers feel comfortable and safe. security.

“Our industry is part of the service and tourism sector in which we employ a large number of highly qualified and motivated people. The closures affected 130,000 direct and indirect employees, not only in our gaming facilities, but also in our restaurants and entertainment areas.

“Our employees cannot wait for the day business is back to normal and they can once again welcome guests to their casinos and entertainment venues, but our industry continues to need support to make this happen for an extremely long time. hard.”


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28 years later, China-Europe land bridge forges stronger ties_ 英语 频道 _ 央视 网 (cctv.com)

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– The new Eurasian land bridge is an international passage connecting the Pacific and the Atlantic. The bridge connects the Chinese coastal towns of Lianyungang and Rizhao with Rotterdam in the Netherlands and Antwerp in Belgium, passing through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland and Germany. It serves more than 30 countries and regions.

– Over the past 28 years, the land bridge has undergone various changes, including the trains traveling on the route and the goods carried by the trains.

– The land bridge has helped to strengthen economic and trade cooperation between China and Europe.

NANJING / BERLIN, February 8 – At Lianyungang Port in east China’s Jiangsu Province, several cranes slowly lift colorful containers and arrange them in a row, ready to be transported by China-Europe freight trains .

The products, including face masks, elevators and building materials, will be shipped to Asian and European destinations ahead of the Spring Festival, which falls on February 12 this year.

The city of Lianyungang is the eastern terminal of the 10,900 km New Eurasian Land Bridge (NELB), an international passage connecting the Pacific and the Atlantic. The bridge connects the Chinese coastal towns of Lianyungang and Rizhao with Rotterdam in the Netherlands and Antwerp in Belgium, passing through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland and Germany. It serves more than 30 countries and regions.

In the past five years, international freight trains have made about 4,000 trips from Lianyungang Port.

“In January alone, 32 China-Europe freight trains passed through Lianyungang Port, and 23 freight trains are expected to depart in February,” said Zuo Xuemei, deputy general manager of Lianyungang China-Kazakhstan International Logistics Co., Ltd.

YEARS OF CHANGE

On December 1, 1992, a locomotive pulled the first international freight train to Central Asia and Europe from Lianyungang, marking the official opening of the NELB. The locomotive has been preserved to this day in Lianyungang Port, testifying to the transformation of economic and trade cooperation between China and Europe.

Shen Gang, along with Sinotrans Land Bridge Transportation Co., Ltd., said the company is the pioneer in providing transportation services on the NELB.

“The first international train was loaded with 30 containers and 15 bulk freight cars,” Shen said. “Initially, it was an internal combustion locomotive with an average speed of 40 km / h. Today, the railway is electrified, with an average speed of 80 to 120 km / h.

Last year, 554 China-Europe freight trains left and arrived in Lianyungang.

Recalling the good old days, Shen said previous workers had to accompany trains to ensure the safe arrival of goods. “However, now we can get logistics information through the Internet at any time, which makes the whole process more convenient and efficient,” Shen added.

Bruce Wei, Managing Director of World Jaguar Logistics Inc., Lianyungang Branch, began engaging in rail transport services along the NELB in 2012. The products delivered via this route have undergone significant changes over the years. , did he declare.

“In the past, the main products were used automobiles and building materials. But now elevators, electronics and solar panels are also being shipped, reflecting the improved standard of living of people. people along the NELB, ”Wei said.

The NELB is not only a simple transport corridor, it also connects China’s interior provinces with Europe and connects all the interior countries with each other, said Li Yuan, professor at the Institute for East Asian Studies at the University of Duisburg-Essen.

When the pandemic hit global maritime logistics hard, medical supplies made in China were routinely shipped to Europe via the Eurasian Continental Bridge. This signifies the importance of the land transport corridor, Li said.

Last year, China-Europe freight trains carried 5,580 tons of anti-epidemic supplies to European countries, including Germany, Serbia, Poland and Austria from the Chinese city of Wuhan alone, have the authorities announced in December.

CLOSER COOPERATION

China has become the EU’s largest trading partner, while the EU is now China’s second largest trading partner. The EU is also China’s third-largest source and destination for investment.

On December 30, it was announced that China and the European Union had completed negotiations for an investment agreement as scheduled after 35 rounds of negotiations, a milestone in the development of China-EU relations. The agreement will provide better market access, a better business environment, stronger institutional guarantees and better prospects for cooperation for mutual investment.

“The strengthening of economic ties, in particular the elimination of investment and trade barriers between China and Europe, will lead to the steady recovery and growth of the world economy in the post-pandemic era,” he said Li said.

Over the years, the land bridge has helped to strengthen economic and trade cooperation between China and Europe.

In the German inland port city of Duisburg, containers specially designed for China-Europe freight trains are often seen at various transfer centers. They are used to export clothing, electronics and household appliances from China to Europe. Meanwhile, more and more cars, machinery and food continue to enter China from Europe via the land bridge.

Xavier Wanderpepen, head of China-Europe rail freight activities at Forwardis, a subsidiary of national rail company SNCF Logistics, was impressed by the boom in freight train operations between China and Europe in the first half of 2020 .

“In my company, since April 2020, the demand for trains has increased significantly. The increase is over 20% compared to 2019,” said Wanderpepen.

According to official figures, a record 12,400 China-Europe freight train trips were made in 2020, up 50 percent from the previous year. It is also the first time that freight train travel between China and Europe has exceeded 10,000 per year.

Building on the success of a booming cooperation, Chinese and European companies are also seeing their exchanges increase. In Duisburg, for example, more than 100 Chinese companies have started doing business, up from just 40 in 2014, according to official figures. An investment center and a trade association have also been established there.

Even during the COVID-19 outbreak, China and Europe saw growth in bilateral trade, with imports and exports between China and 27 European Union member countries increasing by around 2.6% in year-on-year change in the first seven months of 2020.

“China-Europe freight trains have played an important role in economic development along the New Eurasian Land Bridge and in the growth of China-Europe bilateral trade in 2020,” said Chen Fengying, researcher at China Institutes of International Relations contemporary. .

Strengthening bilateral economic ties between the two sides would generate more business opportunities, create new jobs and increase confidence in the economic recovery of China, Europe and the rest of the world, Li Yuan said.

Chinese and European companies have enormous opportunities for cooperation to build new economic corridors along the NELB, Li added.

Logistical diversification is an advantage, and good land connections, such as the NELB, will make connections “wider and stronger,” said Dr Michael Borchmann, former ministerial director of the state of Hesse, Germany, and Senior Advisor of the China International Investment Promotion Agency.


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The European city of loafers and loafers

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The word “aylyak” is not widely used outside of Plovdiv, although it appears in Bulgarian dictionaries from the end of the 19th century. It’s a loan from Turkish “aylaklik“, which means” idleness “,” loitering “or” vagrancy “, and it is rooted in Turkish”aylık”, Meaning“ month ”.

According to Yana Genova, director of the House of Literature and Translation in Sofia, the original meaning of aylyak was a person hired to work month by month, so he knew what it was like to have free time. The verb that goes with aylyak is “bichim “, a derivative of the verb “bicha ”, which means hitting, whipping or cutting beams and planks in a tree trunk. The idea of ​​hitting, whipping or cutting reminds us that aylyak is something active. If you want to practice Aylyak, you have to make time for yourself. You must take the initiative to separate yourself from your daily concerns.

You may also be interested in:
• The city that joins three countries
• Bulgaria’s ruined ode to socialism
• Why Poles hate rules

But whatever the word’s origins, in contemporary Plovdiv aylyak has taken on its own meaning and meaning, something it’s not so much about translating as it is about living. When you ask people to explain what it means, more often than not they are telling you a joke. The joke goes like this. A citizen of Plovdiv hangs out with a Spanish visitor to the city. “What is aylyak?” Asks the Spaniard. The Bulgarian thought for a few moments, then said: “It is as if your manana, manana, but without all the stress.

In 2019, Plovdiv shared the title of European Capital of Culture with Matera in Italy. As part of the activities of the City of Culture, an organization – the Fire Theater Mime Company, led by Bulgarian actor, director and mime artist Plamen Radev Georgiev – organized a series of public consultations to further explore the ‘aylyak. He wanted to know what aylyak is, what its origins are and how it came to be so closely associated with Plovdiv.


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The European city of loafers and loafers

0

The word “aylyak” is not widely used outside of Plovdiv, although it appears in Bulgarian dictionaries from the end of the 19th century. It’s a loan from Turkish “aylaklik“, Which means” idleness “,” loitering “or” vagrancy “, and it is rooted in Turkish”aylık”, Meaning“ month ”.

According to Yana Genova, director of the House of Literature and Translation in Sofia, the original meaning of aylyak was a person hired to work month by month, so he knew what it was like to have free time. The verb that goes with aylyak is “bichim “, a derivative of the verb “bicha ”, which means hitting, whipping or cutting beams and planks in a tree trunk. The idea of ​​hitting, whipping or cutting reminds us that aylyak is something active. If you want to practice Aylyak, you have to make time for yourself. You must take the initiative to separate yourself from your daily concerns.

You may also be interested in:
• The city that joins three countries
• Bulgaria’s ruined ode to socialism
• Why Poles hate rules

But whatever the word’s origins, in contemporary Plovdiv aylyak has taken on its own meaning and meaning, something it’s not so much about translating as it is about living. When you ask people to explain what it means, more often than not they are telling you a joke. The joke goes like this. A citizen of Plovdiv hangs out with a Spanish visitor to the city. “What is aylyak?” Asks the Spaniard. The Bulgarian thought for a few moments, then said: “It is as if your manana, manana, but without all the stress.

In 2019, Plovdiv shared the title of European Capital of Culture with Matera in Italy. As part of the activities of the City of Culture, an organization – the Fire Theater Mime Company, led by Bulgarian actor, director and mime artist Plamen Radev Georgiev – organized a series of public consultations to further explore the ‘aylyak. He wanted to know what aylyak is, what its origins are and how it came to be so closely associated with Plovdiv.


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Coronavirus: bicycles keep cars away from streets of European cities, Europe News & Top Stories

BERLIN (BLOOMBERG) – Bikes are driving cars farther and farther away on the streets of European cities, as the coronavirus accelerates the shift to pedal power.

Even before the pandemic, bicycles saw an increase in demand from environmentally conscious consumers, but the risk of contagion on buses and subways increased the appeal.

The emergence of e-bikes, which boost horsepower with an electric motor, removed some of the sweat factor, making cycling a viable option for more consumers after the blockages were lifted.

Governments are fueling the trend, offering purchase incentives ranging from € 100 (S $ 157) to up to € 1,500 for heavy professional e-bike users.

Cities from Berlin to Lisbon are also opening up more space, with nearly 1,500 km of new lanes promised in the wake of the public health crisis, according to the European Cycling Federation.

“People want autonomous and sustainable mobility, it’s a transformation of society,” said Ms. Susanne Puello, an industry veteran who helps manage Pierer Mobility’s e-bike business, including brands Husqvarna and R Raymon.

“Corona is a phenomenal push in this direction.”

The unit’s revenue is expected to triple to more than 100 million euros in 2020 compared to two years ago, and the bike maker expects sales to climb to around 500 million euros. euros by 2025, putting it behind industry heavyweights like Dutch manufacturer Accell Group. , Specialty Bicycle Components from the United States, and Giant Manufacturing Co and Merida Industry Co. of Taiwan.

Growing demand has also propelled new services like Swapfiets.

The Amsterdam-based company which offers bike subscriptions on Thursday, July 2 has announced plans to expand to London, Milan and Paris before the end of the year, after strong demand during the pandemic carried its customer base to more than 200,000.

The company – majority-owned by Pon Holdings, maker of Gazelle and Kalkhoff bikes – plans to add more electric bikes and scooters to its lineup.

Swapfiets offers long-term rentals and differs from ad hoc services like Uber Technologies’ Jump, which became part of Lime amid the spread of the disease.

“Corona only contributes to the decision, but is not really the cause,” said Mr. Onno Huyghe, Managing Director of Swapfiets.

“Most people just recognize that cycling is the best form of transportation” in the city.

During the shutdown, people across Germany spent twice as much time cycling than before, according to Ms Stephanie Krone, traffic expert at the German cycling association ADFC.

Bike shops are currently experiencing an “unprecedented boom”, but for this to continue, municipalities must improve infrastructure to accommodate all newcomers, she said.

Demand in Europe’s largest economy is supported in part by programs such as tax breaks for employers to provide rental bicycles to workers, as part of Germany’s efforts to tackle climate change .

Ms Puello estimates that one in four electric bicycles, which typically cost more than € 2,000, were rented last year.

Germany is by far the largest bicycle market in Europe, with 1.36 million e-bikes sold in 2019, more than double the number three years earlier.

For comparison, 3.6 million cars were sold in the country last year, and the market fell 35% in the first half of 2020.

The lockdown prompted authorities in 32 of the largest cities in the European Union to come up with the planned improvements, according to the European Cyclists Federation.

Belgium, Denmark and the Netherlands pioneered expressways designed for commuters.

Many plans are made to the detriment of automobile traffic.

Notoriously congested Rome, for example, has mostly painted only cycle lanes on existing roads, and Berlin and Paris have put up pop-up lanes amid the pandemic.

Women are one of the main drivers of the increase in e-bike sales.

Giant Manufacturing has created a separate brand focused on women, while Ms Puello said Pierer’s Husqvarna has cross-appeal because the Swedish company’s portfolio of the same name spans from chainsaws to sewing machines.

To some extent, the gain of the bicycle industry is the pain of the automakers.

More than half of consumers see e-bikes as a suitable substitute for certain car uses, and 28 percent see e-bikes as a primary substitute for cars for downtown transportation, according to a survey by Internetstores , an online bicycle retailer owned by Austrian billionaire René Benko’s Signa Holding.

The company expects cycling trends to help it grow by around 30% per year in the coming years, a rate that could push it to € 1 billion in revenue. from 2023.

“People are turning to bicycles for getting around to improve their health and fitness, to save money, because they love to ride and for the sake of the environment,” said Hans Dohrmann, Managing Director of Internet Stores.

“They want fitness without booking a training camp.”


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Uncommon flavors of Europe land in New York

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Petaluma, California – For eight weeks starting January 13, 2020, Eataly NYC will share with the world why Asiago PDO, Speck Alto Adige IGP and Pecorino Romano PDO are the undisputed “Rare Flavors of Europe” through exhibitions, tastings and special events. and menus throughout the Epicurean Mecca’s Flatiron location.

The promotional period begins with special restaurant menus on January 13, followed by dedicated retail exhibitions, staff training and a consumer class, open to the public on January 17, 2020 from 6.30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

“We are delighted to have our product at Eataly where American buyers can taste the flavor of our product, just like Italian consumers do every day,” said Luca Cracco, director of Consorzio Asiago AOP.

As part of the “Enjoy, it’s from Europe” campaign adopted by the European Union, the “Uncommon Flavors of Europe” program, which is in its third year, brings together these three typically Italian foods by highlighting their closely related distinctive qualities. to their unique places of origin. .

After opening its first American site in New York in 2010, Eataly now has six sites in the United States, 37 of which are worldwide, and is the undisputed first Italian supplier of food products dedicated to small producers and of exquisite quality.

“Eataly is the perfect partner to help share the extraordinary flavors of Speck Alto Adige, Pecorino Romano and Asiago cheese with American consumers,” said Danielle Caponi Bolla, founder of Ponte Collaborative who is responsible for organizing the program. three years. “These three regional dishes from Italy are steeped in history and are largely still prepared the same way they were centuries ago. It is an honor to represent the families and farmers who make these special products and to work with Eataly on their behalf.

The “Enjoy, it’s from Europe” program promotes Europe’s protected designation of origin (PDO) and protected geographical indication (PGI) foods and provides information on the EU’s quality system which strives to protect the names of quality agricultural products.

About partner products
Asiago PDO is made from the milk of cows that graze in lush fields in the provinces of Trento and Vicenza and parts of the provinces of Padua and Treviso. Fresh Asiago tastes like creamy milk and melts easily on the tongue while aged Asiago ranges from sweet and yeasty to hints of hazelnut and even salted caramel, all depending on age ranging from 4 months to 15 months or more.

The Speck Alto Adige IGP, made exclusively in the Italian province of Alto Adige, is a unique ham that combines the traditions of curing in the air of the Mediterranean with the traditions of smoking in the Alps. The process begins with the careful selection of high quality lean pork thighs.

Pecorino Romano PDO dates back 2,000 years and proudly carries on the rich and long history of the ancient Roman sheep’s milk cheeses in Italy. Sheep still graze in wild pastures filled with native flora on the island of Sardinia, the Lazio region and the province of Grosseto. It is only there that Pecorino Romano PDO can be made from fresh whole sheep’s milk from October to July.

About PDO and IGP
Among the EU quality certifications, PDO certified foods have the strongest possible link with original historical practices, as their ingredients must come from and their production must take place in the natural environment in which the product has grown. developed. IGP foods are made with traditional production methods in their historic places of origin. While the raw ingredients can come from outside the production area but within the EU, all ingredients are scrupulously checked for quality.


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Dutch Minister Says Southern European Countries Wasted Money on BOOZE and WOMEN | World | New

Dutch Economy Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem has ruffled feathers as he accused southern EU states of wasting money on frivolous purchases.

Mr Dijsselbloem, also the current head of the Eurogroup, launched a scathing attack on the nations of the south as he launched a campaign to stay in power.

He said: “In the euro crisis, the countries of the North have shown solidarity with the countries affected by the crisis.

“As a social democrat, I attach exceptional importance to solidarity, but whoever asks for it also has obligations.

“You can’t spend all your money on drinks and women and then ask for help.”

Mr Dijsselbloem is trying to cling to power despite his Labor Party falling in the polls in last week’s national elections.

It is likely that the result will prevent his party from remaining in the governing coalition.

The question of the creation of a permanent presidency of the Eurogroup, an option which has already been proposed by bodies such as the European Parliament, is all the more relevant as Mr Dijsselbloem could lose his post as Dutch minister before the end of his mandate within the Eurogroup in 2018.

Amid his uncertain future, his final remarks, made in an interview with a German newspaper, angered the South, especially Spain.

Spain’s Economy Minister Luis de Guindos attacked Dijsselbloem for his negative portrayal of southern Europe.

East Europeans in UK feel like ‘second class citizens’

You can’t spend all your money on drinks and women and then ask for help

Jeroen Dijsselbloem

He called his comments “unfortunate”, adding: “I don’t think Portugal, Greece, Cyprus or Ireland wasted money. Solidarity is important.

“They loaned us $ 40 billion, but we have loaned other countries a similar amount and making such comparisons is not ideal.”

The Mediterranean country was one of the hardest hit by the financial crash and needed financial help and bailout from the EU.

GETTY

Spain’s Economy Minister Luis de Guindos attacked Mr. Dijsselbloem

De Guindos highlighted the country’s economic recovery, suggesting that this would allow Spain to participate more in the EU.

He said: “Spain is clearly under-represented in the economic organizations of the EU and the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU).

    Southern European EU drinks money for womenGETTY

Spain and other southern European countries have expressed growing concern over a two-speed Europe

“The economic recovery is important for all Spaniards and achieving the deficit target is important because it is a factor of stability and it is much more relevant than the recovery in employment.”

Spain and other southern European countries have expressed growing concern with Brussels over plans for a two-speed Europe because they fear they will be left behind.


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