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Global Technology Profile: Spain

Spain is one of the most vibrant countries in the world. Spain’s major tech-related industries are energy, telecommunications, and finance.

ECONOMIC CATEGORY - Fully Developed Country

INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT SPAIN

Spain is:

  • the 14th biggest economy in the world, and 5th in the European Union (GDP of $1.7+ trillion).
  • a global leader in renewable energy generation and consumption.
  • Europe’s 2nd highest quantity wind power generator and turbine manufacturer.

Madrid, Spain.
Spain’s national capital, Madrid.


MAJOR SPANISH TECH INDUSTRIES AND CORPORATIONS

Spain is well-known in Europe for its blossoming economy. Prominent multinational Spanish tech corporations include Telefonica ($64+ billion) and BBVA Banking Group ($29+ billion).


Major Energy Companies:

  • Abengoa
  • Gas Natural Fenosa
  • Indra Sistemas
  • Gamesa

Major Telecommunications Companies:

  • Telefonica
  • Abertis
  • Indra Sistemas

Major Financial Institutions:

  • BBVA Banking Group
  • The Santander Group
  • Banco Sabadell

THE RENEWABLE ENERGY CRAZE IN SPAIN

As global warming continues to progress rapidly, there is the pressing concern of climate change. In 2005, Spain witnessed the effects of climate change through the worst drought in its history. Following the drought, the Spanish government vowed to take steps to prevent such a disaster from striking again by stressing the importance of renewable energy and alternative energy sources. Currently, Spain is a global leader in wind power generation and consumption. By utilizing increasingly advanced technologies to harness this energy, they are making a great impact in reducing the carbon footprint in Europe.

About 43% of Spain’s total electricity generation is from renewable energy, and its main renewable energy source is wind power. In fact, about 21% of Spain’s electricity is sourced from wind power. Furthermore, the Navarra region was the highest rated of Spain’s 17 autonomous regions in regards to wind power, with about 70% of regional electricity coming from wind turbines. This growth of wind-sourced electricity is the result of an upward trend beginning in the late 1990’s, since that time, the amount of electricity sourced from wind power has grown from about 830 to 23,000 megawatts.

Spain, a country known for abundant sunshine, is an ideal location for solar thermal power. Solar power works by utilizing the heat of the sun. Europe’s first commercial solar plant, situated in Andalusia, use photovoltaics made from semiconductors to convert sunlight to electricity. With abundant sunshine, Spain is constantly improving their ability to harness energy from natural resources. By utilizing photovoltaics, Spain is decreasing the amount of air pollution. In short, it does not contribute to acid rain, global warming, or smog, proving to be an extremely efficient.


IMPACT ON ECONOMY (HOW RENEWABLE ENERGY BOOSTS AND HELPS SPANISH ECONOMY)

Plentiful sunshine isn’t the only reason people have come to Spain. There is abundant land to house projects as well as tariffs that guarantee 25 year of up to triple the market price for solar energy. This tariff made building plants economically viable. In fact, money committed for spanish solar power projects have shot up nearly 500%. The government recognizes that the initial costs of building a plant is expensive, as seen through the wind plants. However, after the creation of the plants, prices will go down which is what happened in Spain with wind power. With gas costs rising and the world sharpening its focus on global working, governments around the world have been looking for solutions. The answer lies in solar power. Usage of solar power has steadily increased from 1996 to 2006, and is still in use today, proving to be an effective source of power benefiting the economy.

A wind farm in Galicia, Spain.
A wind farm in Galicia, Spain.


MOBILE WORLD CONGRESS - BARCELONA 2018

Since the past few years, Spain has hosted the Mobile World Congress trade show. This trade show, similar to Consumer Electronics Show, is a big platform for leaders in the technology industry to showcase and unveil their newest smartphones and technologies. This annual event is arguably the world’s best venue for mobile industry networking and new business dealmaking. This event is also a platform for leaders to discuss the potential of smartphone development, and revolutionary concepts such as the 5G network and virtual reality. HTC has been rather quiet of late - apart from in the Vive department - but we know that HTC will be launching something with two cameras in 2018. Some of the most anticipated products and technologies will be unveiled at this 3 day event. Huawei has a mixed history with MWC, often using the conference to launch new devices, but is not always the new flagship. For Nokia, we expect to see the worldwide launch of the new Nokia 6, recently announced in China, but recent leaks of the Nokia 1 and Nokia 7/7+ suggest that's what's coming. MWC 2018 will be hosted by Barcelona, a tech hub of Europe, from 26 February - 1 March.


Barcelona 2018


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