Spain is the world’s second most popular destination for tourism and was visited by over 83 million people in 2019 marking the seventh consecutive year of growth, on average this accounts for 11% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Its global prominence is manifested by the presence of the headquarters of the World Tourism Organisation.
Spain is known as the ideal summer destination for Europeans and the majority of visitors are from the UK, Germany, France and Italy who come to sample its wide ranging attractions. In the south Spain’s Mediterranean coast has numerous fantastic beaches that bring the summer tourist but this is only one facet of this countries variety of offerings. Beaches in abundance yes, but consider other elements and you will find significant religious and historical sites. In Catholicism Santiago de Compostela is the third most important city and draws pilgrims from across the globe.
Mountains and lakes, over thirty high quality ski resorts, Sierra Nevada a mere three-hour drive from Murcia. In English The ‘Snowy Range’ is the most southerly ski resort in Europe at its foot the Alhambra literally translated to English ‘The Red One’ a Moorish Palace of the Nasrid dynasty that ruled from 1230 until 1492.
Steeped in history, with large areas of natural beauty and 12 National Parks this country has a great deal to offer visitors looking for a multitude of exciting and new experiences.
Spain has a healthy manufacturing industry and two of the main export commodities are motor vehicles and pharmaceuticals. Pharmaceuticals are worth 22 billion euros to the economy.
The Spanish motor vehicle manufacturing industry is one of the country’s main economic drivers ranking 8th globally and 2nd in Europe. There are over a dozen globally recognised brands including Nissan, Ford, Renault, SEAT and Comarth (electric cars) building motor vehicles in Spain. Producing 2.8 million vehicles annually with 80% of production destined for export. This accounts for 9% of the GDP and a whopping 19% of the country’s exports.
In many areas of the country the terrain and the soil quality are not good and these combined limit agricultural production. It is estimated that 10% (land area) is able to provide good land to cultivate effectively. To counter this situation Spain has the second highest amount of land in Europe devoted purely for agricultural purposes. The majority of this land is used for pasture, although around 20% of land is under irrigation and is produces a massive 50% of Spain’s agricultural exports.
Horticultural exported commodities such as various vegetables, peppers, tomatoes, numerous green vegetables along with citrus fruits are a highly important contributor to the economy. Spain is Western Europe’s top producer of citrus fruits.
Spain’s liquid gold, in 2018/19 the world’s number one olive producer had exports that reached record highs with figures released by the Olive Oil Market Bulletin published by the Spanish Ministry. Total sales amounted to 117.300 tons.
A major initiative has put Spanish olive oil in the spotlight.
The Olive Oil world tour that landed in Miami, Florida began a roll out campaign under the slogan ‘Let’s Make A Tastier World’ and promoted Spain’s olive oils. It was held at the worlds largest cruise ship terminal that sees 5.3 million passengers annually.
Having the largest area of vineyards in the world and at times being the world number one in wine exports Spain continues to improve and innovate its wine industry. In 2018 exports of both packaged and bulk wines which generally head to UK, Germany, France, Italy and Portugal hit a record high. Figures released by the Spanish Wine Market Observatory stated that a total of 1.986 billion litres headed out of Spain worth in impressive 2.912 billion euros.