Representatives from the British and Spanish business communities got together on Tuesday morning in Marbella for an event organised by the British Chamber of Commerce in Spain (BCC) and the CIT business association in Marbella to analyse opportunities in the 'new normal'.
BCC Vice-President for Andalucía Derek Langley opened the event, stating that despite Brexit and the coronavirus pandemic, the UK is still the biggest investor in Spain. So far this year investment in this country from the UK amounts to eight billion euros, 56.9% of foreign investment in this country, he said.
Also speaking at the event, British Consul Charmaine Arbouin stressed the need for both Britons and Spaniards to adapt to the new situation from 31 December 2020 when the UK's Brexit transition period comes to an end.
"We don't know what's going to happen, but people will still come [to Spain]. In fact the British are still coming with an interest in buying and investing," said the consul, who took the opportunity to urge all British nationals resident in Spain to make sure their residency papers are in order before the end of the year.
Arbouin pointed out that both for British individuals and businesses in Spain there was likely to be more bureaucracy from next year.
Vice-President of CIT Ricardo Bocanegra said that while investment from the UK had slowed this year, he was confident that it would pick up after the transition period. He too predicted an increase in paperwork and bureaucracy after the UK exits the EU.
Speakers at the event included Setareh Mohregi, International Department Director at Gilmar Real Estate; Bernard Fay, Founding Partner at UHY Fay & Co; Inmaculada Domecq, Tax Director at UHY Fay & Co; and Maryna Yatsenyuk, International Premier Clients Manager at Caixa Bank & Sector Director at Hola Bank.
Representing Marbella town hall was Councillor for Foreign Residents Remedios Bocanegra.