The mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida, said that “Spain has a geostrategic capacity that is often not counted, and it has to be a bridge between the East and Latin America.” The mayor thus valued the future expansion by Aena of the Barajas Airport. “I am not so concerned about the number of passengers, as the increase in Spain’s logistics capacity, which can consolidate, due to its position, as a large airport hub .”
Almeida participated in the fourth dialogue of the cycle of conferences El Progreso en el Siglo XXI , promoted by the Barcelona Society of Economic and Social Studies of Foment del Treball, at CaixaForum in Madrid under the title The city as a key factor for economic and social development , where the mayor of Madrid and the president of the Economic and Social Council (CES), Antón Costas, debated and analyzed the key role that cities have in today’s society to promote economic and social development and eliminate inequalities. In addition, they indicated the objectives that a city must set itself to establish itself as a center of activation of real opportunities for citizens.
“Between Madrid and Barcelona there should be a competitive dialogue, and the ability to grow mutually through dialogue, but also through the generation of opportunities in agreement , each one according to its characteristics,” said Almeida after referring to the Mediterranean Corridor, of which he was in favor.
For his part, the president of the Economic and Social Council (CES), Antón Costas, stressed that “cities must promote education and human capital, which together with housing are the ways to revitalize them. In his opinion,” a country as Spain needs a balanced model of large, medium and small cities; each of which should specialize in different innovations. ”
In this sense, Martínez-Almeida highlighted “the importance of Madrid as a catalyst for other parts of Spain.” The mayor pointed out that “if we have good infrastructures that allow any citizen of Spain to get to an international airport like Barajas quickly, it will help to avoid what we call emptied Spain.”
Regarding infrastructure, the mayor indicated that “the expansion of the El Prat Airport is necessary , it is important to understand that generating new opportunities for economic growth and ensuring sustainability is possible.” On the other hand, Martínez-Almeida explained his concept of progress. “Society is the owner of itself and from the Administration we must generate the propitious and adequate conditions so that it is the society ultimately the one that decides at all times what it wants to do, and guarantee progress according to its needs in the city” said the mayor.
The president of Agbar, Ángel Simón, affirmed that “it is essential to give impetus to the transformation of cities through shared leadership, between the business sector, administrations and citizens. Public-private collaboration will allow us to shape the cities of the future”.