Foreign Companies Keep their Positive Rating of Spain’s Business Climate

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• Spain’s rating for 2011 is identical to last year’s, with 2.9 out of 5

• Investment prospects of foreign entrepreneurs for next year are very positive and improve compared to the previous year´s

Madrid, 15 September 2011. Spain’s Business Climate Barometer score for 2011, 2.9 out of 5, is identical to last year’s. This is one of the findings of the “Spanish Business Climate Barometer”. From a foreign investor perspective” report, prepared for the fifth consecutive year by INVEST IN SPAIN, in collaboration with the IESE Business School’s International Centre for Competitiveness (ICC). The barometer provides an overview on evolution of foreign entrepreneur prospects over the course of the last five years.

The barometer gathers the opinion of 300 foreign companies on Spain’s business climate, identifying the strengths that need to be maintained, and fostered, as well as the key areas for improvement worthy of continued efforts.

Infrastructures stand out among the key strengths of Spain’s business climate Entrepreneurs have a high-regard for Spain’s high-speed rails, airports, and highways. They also point out the high quality of Spain’s business schools, the competitive cost of transport and the quality of life. These are areas that also improve their rating compared to last year.

On the other hand, the Barometer also allows identifying the fields on which, according to investors, more efforts need to be put on. As key areas for improvement, foreign entrepreneurs highlighted the speed and efficiency of mercantile courts, work schedule flexibility and redundancy costs, as well as Spanish workers’ language skills.

Within the context of the current economic climate, entrepreneurs also pointed out the need to improve the access both to public and private funding, and the need to implement new investment incentives and subsidies, especially in connection with R&D+I related activities.

Investment Prospects for 2012
Investment prospects of foreign entrepreneurs for next year are very positive, and improve as compared to the previous one. If in 2010, 27% of the companies stated their intention to boost their investments in Spain, this percentage increased to 37.2% in 2011. Likewise, the percentage of companies that intend to cut their workforce decreased and 60% of respondents expected to see their turnover increase the following year.

Foreign companies play a crucial role in the Spanish economy. There are currently 12,000 foreign businesses operating in Spain, employing 1.3 million people. Also, due to their exporting profile, they are essential to our trade balance, and help to modernize and streamline the Spanish business fabric, as they engage in high added-value activities and bring in cutting-edge technologies.

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