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Spain's Role in Europe

Spain was officially integrated into the EEC on 1 January 1986. Since then, Spain has seen huge economic, social and political transformations, among other reasons due to the major impact of cohesion and structural funds, which jump-started the development of Spanish regions (Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y de Cooperación).

Since the integration into the UE, Spain in the community has made important advantages in agriculture, industry, the service sector and in general thoughout the Spanish economic life. Moreover, from the point of view of European management, several Spaniards have held senior positions in the European Institutions: Enrique Baron chaired the European Parliament (1989-1992), which was then headed by Jose María Gil-Robles (1997-1999) and then by Josep Borrel (2004-2007)

Three and a half years after the Spanish Integration in June 1989, Spain Joined the national currency (the peseta), in the exchange rate mechanism of the European Monetary system, developed by France, Italy, Denmark, The Netherlands and Luxembourg. Spain signed in June 1991 by the Schengen agreement, which initially eight countries eliminated controls at internal borders, the “Europe without borders” which came into force in March 1995 and progressively joined almost all member states.

There are 54 members of the European Parliament from Spain, find out more details in the website of the European Parliament. In addition, visit the website of the European Parliament office in Spain for further information.

How much does Spain contribute and receive?

The Financial contributions of the Member countries to the EU budget are shared according to the country´s economy; the countries which are stronger, in consequence the strongest ones are the main contributors to the EU Budget. The EU budget doesn´t aim to redistribute wealth, but rather to focus on the needs of all Europeans as a whole.

Breakdown of Spain´s finances with the EU in 2014 (European Commission):

  • Total EU spending in Spain – € 11.539 billion
  • Total EU spending as % of Spanish GNI – 1.10 %
  • Total Spanish contribution to the EU budget – € 9.978 billion
  • Spanish contribution to the EU budget as % of its GNI – 0.95 %.


The money paid into the EU budget by Spain helps fund programs and projects in all EU countries – like building roads, subsidizing researchers and protecting the environment.