Destinations Magazine

Spain and Gibraltar: Like North Korea?

By Stizzard
Spain and Gibraltar: Like North Korea? You may have to pay as well as wait

WITH its branches of British high street retailers such as Marks and Spencer or BHS, and a large Morrisons supermarket, Gibraltar can seem the most English of places. Add in seagulls, tepid beer and red telephone boxes and the picture of a genteel British seaside town might be complete. But Gibraltar lies 1,800km (1,100 miles) from mainland Britain. The only land this rocky outcrop is attached to is the Iberian peninsula, from which it juts south towards Africa and into the Strait of Gibraltar. And although it is a British Overseas Territory governed by an elected body that styles itself “Her Majesty’s Government”, many of its 30,000 residents speak Spanish as naturally as they do English, often with a lisping Andalusian accent.In many ways the symbiosis works like a charm. Spaniards from one of the country’s poorest, most unemployment-hit regions, the Campo de Gibraltar, cross the border daily to work in this low-tax paradise with a tiger-like economy that grew 30% over four years from 2008. For them it is a refuge from double-dip recession and 40% local unemployment. And Gibraltarians have all…

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