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Meyer Report - Spanish Property Rights

Plenary Speech - Wednesday, 13th September 2011

Mr. President

I have only one problem with this otherwise excellent report. It omits any mention of the issue which has generated the highest number of petitions in recent years. This was the Spanish property issue.

Hundreds of EU citizens from many countries have spent their life savings on dream properties in Spain, only to wake up one morning to find an eviction notice on the mat and a bull-dozer at the gate.

For a decade, Spain has refused to deal with this issue. It denies property rights and enforceable contracts to EU citizens. It defies the rule of law. It makes a nonsense of our commitment to human rights.

This is a scandal. It shows the impotence not only of the Petitions Committee, but of this parliament, and indeed of the EU generally, to deliver on the promises we make to citizens.

It is time to make a stand, and to tell Spain that we expect it to meet its obligations, and to resolve this problem.

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