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Archives Andorra news 2022

How Can I Help? > News Andorra > News 2022

The Archives from 2022  news around Andorra as it was!  Post Covid, Andorra is back on the map.

Let`s see what happened or in most cases what has not!

October 2022  Andorra's population to hit 3.3 million according to Government statistics...

So who has been paid to dream this one up?  Whilst funding for the La Massana bypass is delayed, the Government deems this to be a financially justifiable statistic, and if,  God forbid,  it were to happen then we would be looking at about 35 La Massana bypasses.  With an 80,000 population Andorra is almost at a standstill at rush hours, imagine queuing for 3 days to get to the ski slopes where you would only be allowed to stand still on for 15 minutes; waiting for 2 weeks for a place on a bus that never moves anyway; fighting for the last baguette, I mean the whole statistic is a complete joke but April 1st it is not. Quite seriously the Government report states that if the urban development is properly controlled in terms of infrastructure, electricity, water etc then this 3.3 m population would be the maximum scenario. Well let`s hope it is not properly controlled and that Government departments have more important issues at hand! STOP PRESS, China's population to hit 1,732,846,345, 901 under the same guidelines ( Yes, that is 1 trillion!!), but there again 72% of statistics are made up on the spot.....

27th August 2022 The proposed heliport at PAL Update!

The Andorra heliport has been proposed during its planning history to be built in various parts of Andorra, Patapou, Encamp, Sant Julia to name but a few locations that were actively considered. Due to local resident pressure these locations were quietly dropped and, in some cases, various technical studies were involved at whatever cost to whoever. It seems by placing the heliport at PAL there is no one up there to complain although judging by comments in the papers people are voicing strong feelings over this proposed location and the effect on the local fauna and flora. The original idea of a heliport for Andorra was to enable a scheduled helicopter route from Andorra to Barcelona in a similar fashion that Monaco enjoys from Nice, which with 50 scheduled flights per day every 15 minutes can cost as little as EUR130 including a chauffeur driven limousine to your destination on arrival.
But back to Pal, and the planned cable car from Andorra La Vella via the Pic de Carroi to Pal has now been shelved indefinitely (that is a very different story please do have a read), also the original plan to include a hotel at the top of PAL is also not going ahead. The planning committee are claiming that the more detailed construction plans are still going ahead, and any investor will require 7 to 9 EUR million to set up the infrastructure, and to date to my knowledge there have been no nibbles (and nibbles is not the name of the heliport cat). It is interesting to note that back in 2016 the infrastructure costs for Encamp Heliport were proposed to be 1.5 EUR million.

Given the exposure to the elements, the isolated location at the top of PAL, the lack of access infrastructure, one wonders what exactly the purpose of this heliport would be given that a scheduled service as originally planned is not going to happen from such a location. It cannot be used for medical emergencies, that is all set up from the landing pad on the hospital. It will not be used for police or military as there aren’t any. Forestry Commission and other chartered services are currently dealt with by Heliland in La Massana who also offer tourist flights. Some newspaper comments have reminded us that elections are not too far away, and these infrastructure schemes do come to prominence at suitable times. Watch this space!!!

18 August, 2022  Post Covid blues but the usual suspects are still performing….

I use the same apology as most global institutions and that delays in updates are due to post Covid lockdowns. It seems though that the Covid lockdowns have not had any material effect on the cynicism associated with the permanent demise of the cable car from Andorra La Vella to the new heliport at PAL; This new heliport at PAL now has no tenders for its construction; there are delays to the opening of the new casino; Andorra La Seu airport sole schedule running at 50% capacity and not without its own problems; Andorra construction continues with its unsustainability and exclusivity policy. There are other subjects that deserve a mention such as Andrail ( Coming soon similar to the Airport at Grau Roig) and will be posted shortly on this very page.

April 1st 2022 Andorra bows to international tensions and will form a National Defence Force...

Since Andorra has been listed by Moscow as a hostile country with the raft of sanctions against named Russian individuals and following the recent failed application by Andorra to join NATO because of no standing army, the Government has proposed to form a National Defence Force “Guardia Militaria” and re-apply. The Ministry of the Interior has confirmed that initially this will take the form of 12-month conscription for those aged 18 to 55. Financing has been agreed in principle for 2 personnel carriers and the construction of a barracks near Auvinyà. The spokesman also confirmed that the conscription will apply to all residents and citizens alike, whether passive or active stating that the wealth of international culture and experience that passive and active residents could bring to the table would benefit greatly for the plans and training for a National Defence Force. NATO has promised to re-examine the application from Andorra to join once the military infrastructure is in place. A Government source said that after almost 950 years of neutrality it is time for Andorra to face up to global issues and play its part in the security of Europe.

Unfortunately this was voted down in Parliament at 12.01 on 1st April 2022

Hats off to Olga Molné the mayor of La Massana for closing the dump at the top of Anyos !!

Andorra's attempt to raise the average height of the country to tackle rising sea levels is coming to an end, The mayor of La Massana has announced that the dump (earth spoil and rocks) that has been in use since 2007 will close by the end of June this year. Hoorahhh for the long suffering residents that have endured day after day of over 180 lorries belching their way up such a beautiful forested area. Unfortunately this has put the hump on local developers who claim that 41 developments will have to stop until a new dump location can be found. It remains to be seen how much pressure will be brought onto La Massana Mayor and decision makers to either delay the closure or agree to a new location. We all pray that La Massana will not back down. On the downside the beautiful fields on the road to Arinsal where the deer used to roam by the Borda Raubert Restaurant will become industrial warehouses, and yes to access the warehouses the lorries will need to trundle through La Massana, already a nightmare for traffic in the absence of the postponed bypass. Perhaps all of the developers should be charged a bypass tax to get this done.

17th January 2022 Would you volunteer to pay a tax?

Someone in Government has estimated that there may be 5,000 apartments here in Andorra that have remained empty and unused for 2 years or more and in a valiant effort to relieve the rental market shortage the Government passed a law in 2019 requiring owners who have not used their premises for 2 years or more to declare that it is empty and pay an "empty tax". All of the apartment owners were given until the 31st December 2021 to comply. Well, so far since this law was introduced a grand total of 14 apartments have been declared (which means that the owner incurs and agrees to a standard empty tax of  5.05 EUR per square metre). The results which were expected to fill the Government coffers are so disappointing that the Ministry of Finance has described them as "disappointing".  Given that holiday homes and the like are exempted it beggars belief if anyone at all would volunteer to pay the Government anything at all. Perhaps this needs a rethink, and maybe include those with a garden who have not mowed the lawn for 6 months (Artificial turf exempted), or those who have a bird fountain that has not attracted any feathered friends for the past 3 months (Tits exempted).....Nuff said..
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