Brits living in Adeje will continue to be ‘Adejeros’

 

Mr Tim Hemmings, deputy head of Mission to the British Embassy, Madrid, in Adeje visit

To a packed meeting of British nationals resident in Adeje and other parts of South Tenerife, the deputy head of mission at the British Embassy, Mr Tim Hemmings was able to reassure those present that they were not about to be “kicked out of Spain”, and that, in line with recent and on-going conversations he and his team were having with government representatives both in the UK and Spain, the rights of British residents in Spain (and other parts of the EU) continued to be one of the top priorities in the Brexit negotiations.

Mr Hemmings was in Adeje with Charmaine Arbouin, the Consul for Southern Spain and the Canary Islands and Helen Keating, vice-consul in Tenerife. Prior to the public meeting the delegation were officially welcomed to the borough by the Adeje councillor for the presidency and deputy mayor Carmen Rosa González Cabrera.

The Adeje councillor said, “Adeje is a borough where over 120 different nationalities live together, side by side, in harmony and with no problems”, and saw no reason why that would not continue to be the case. She also stressed the importance of being on the ‘padrón’, the resident’s register, “and making sure you renew your existence on the padrón when you are required to”.

Over 80 British nationals, resident here in South Tenerife, attended the public part of Mr Hemming’s visit, where he spoke to assure people that the rights of British people who had chosen to live abroad was genuinely the UK government’s Nº1 priority. He outlined the current negotiations in as far as was relevant, stressing how many areas of agreement there were now between the British Government and the EU team, before opening up the floor to questions. People were concerned about a range of issues, from taxations rights to pensions, passports and the possibility of dual nationality (currently not possible), and the likelihood of needing visas to travel to and from Spain in the future, and Mr Hemmings and the other members of the delegation dealt effectively with all the questions asked.

Following the meeting those who had attended said they certainly felt their principal questions had been answered and were grateful for the chance to meet with the Embassy representative. For his part Mr Hemmings stressed the importance of keeping the consul and the Embassy up to date on the public’s concerns about the negotiations as, given the large number of Britons living in Spain, the UK government do pay particular attention to the views coming from this country.

Department of Communications

 

 

 

 

 

 

Life post-Brexit!

Brexit: “Stick to the facts and you’ll know what’s going on”

Up to 100 Britons attended an information seminar organised by Blevins Franks at the Adeje Cultural Centre this week, invited by the Adeje international residents group Focus, with the support of the council. They heard from the financial advice company that in their professional opinion that it was in the interests of the Spanish government to make sure that British residents in Spain were looked after, and that good working relations with the British government continued to flourish.

Adeje councillor for institutional relations and youth affairs, Zebenzui Chinea Lineras, welcomed the attendees and said that Adeje was very aware of its commitment to all residents of the over 120 countries living in the borough. He said they would be interested in all the suggestions and ideas that came out of the conference and hoped the questions many people had would be addressed.

“Rajoy and Theresa May are thick as thieves”, Wayne Sheridan told the conference, saying that Theresa May was on the plane to Spain to speak to Rajoy within 24 hours of his confirmation as leader of the country following the most recent election here. “Rajoy has too much to lose”, Sheridan said, pointing to the €30 billion that he would forfeit, “if he gets it wrong”. He said that personally he hadn’t been a fan of Brexit but that to date Theresa May hadn’t put a foot wrong in her negotiations with the EU and he firmly believed that both the rights of EU citizens in Britain and those of British residents here in Spain were not under threat.

Paul Montague, the other speaker from Blevins Franks, dealt with the exchange of information between governments regarding taxes, and the need for full declaration of assets in both countries. He also stressed the huge importance of legitimising your situation here, something that echoed the earlier contribution of Clio O’Flynn, who spoke about the importance of registering on the ‘Padrón’, and the multitude of benefits for the resident as well as local government.

‘Don’t Panic’ message at Brexit conference

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Over 120 people attended the recent Brexit/Bremain conference held in the Adeje Cultural Centre, with questions ranging from issues about pensions to health care provisions and questions surrounding possible financial implications to businesses and exchange rates in the case of a majority vote to leave.

The conference was organised by the FOCUS Adeje International Residents Group and the Adeje Council, with British residents from Adeje and other boroughs in attendance. First to speak was deputy mayor Carmen Rosa Gonzalez Cabrera. She told participants, “Today’s event is about you and how the vote on June 23rd might affect you and your families. I hope that the answers you get this afternoon will clear up doubts you may have, and help you have a clearer vision of what matters.

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“I will say one thing from my point of view, from the council’s point of view – you are as much a part of Adeje as anyone else who lives here – we are all part of the European family, and we don’t want to lose you, so I do hope that on June 23rd the majority vote will be to remain in the European Union”.

The panel speakers were Paul Montague, Blevins Franks Tenerife representative, Adeje based Spanish lawyer José Escobedo, and Tenerife blogger and academic Janet Anscombe, all of whom answered a range of questions from the audience, easing fears of any immediate major and unwelcome repercussions in the event of a No vote – with the supposition that in the event of a yes vote very little would need to change.

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Paul told the audience that if the majority vote was to leave the European Union, negotiations to “extract the UK from the EU would take a minimum of two years, and most likely many more”. He also referred people to the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties ‘Acquired Rights’, which states that the termination of a treaty, in this case the UK’s membership of the EU, ‘does not affect any right, obligation or legal situation of the parties created through the execution of the treaty prior to its termination’ (Article 70.1B). “In a nutshell, if you have made your bed in another country (taxes, residencia, home and social) then under this convention these have to remain”.

José Escobedo also referred to regional laws which protected residents, and reaffirmed the long standing good relations the British and the Spanish have enjoyed over the centuries, “We even kept one of Nelson’s arms”, adding that this was very unlikely to be changed by the vote. Jose also addressed the legal issue of resident status stating clearly that anyone who had lived and registered as a resident in Spain over a number of years would continue to enjoy all the rights and benefits of a resident regardless of the outcome on June 23rd.
Janet Anscombe told the conference that many of the perceived EU-related problems in the UK were in fact issues of national policy. “The UK has a residency based social welfare system, so anyone who resides in the UK has automatic rights to, housing, social welfare and health benefits, whereas here in Spain it’s a contributory social welfare system, so if you haven’t paid in you can’t claim. That has nothing to do with the EU, it is a result of British Government policy and something I don’t see any political party in the UK likely to change, but people are tending to blame the European Union for the negative effects it can produce”.

At the end of the meeting a show of hands indicated quite a high number of those in attendance had registered to vote, a reflection of both the huge interest this matter has for overseas UK residents and the high profile campaign the UK government has run to encourage the millions of Britons living abroad to register.

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