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Tuesday, May 23, 2006

May 30 Celebrates El Día de Canarias

Flag of the Canary Islands

One of the next major anniversaries in the Canary Islands is the annual celebration of "Canarianess" that takes place every May 30th.

As every year, there will be various acts of celebration from the private to the institutional and including a varied menu of sporting, musical and cultural offerings. The most important, however, of this year's acts will be the plenary session anticipated to be celebrated in the Chamber on May 30, for the approval of the project of reform of the Statute of Autonomy.

El Día de Canarias (Canaries Day) celebrates the anniversary of the first session of the Canary Islands Parliament, which took place on May 30th, 1983, ten months after the publication of the Estatuto de Autonomía (Statute of Autonomy) in the Boletín Oficial del Estado (Official State Bulletin).

The Statute, published on August 10, 1982, gave the Canary Islands greater powers of self-governance and recognition on the part of the Spanish Constitution of the concept of "Canarian nationality". This had been the aspiration of the Canary islanders since the days of the Second Republic, however Civil War and Franco's regime intervened and it took 46 years before an Autonomous Government in the Canary Islands became a reality.

There have been profound changes to the politics, economics, society and culture of the islands in these last 23 years. At the end of 1982, the islands had 1,431,045 inhabitants, which, 20 years on had risen to more than 1.8 million. (It is estimated that numbers now to have reached 2 million.)

The community budget multiplied by 36 in those first two decades and production per capita had multiplied almost five times.

In 1982, the Canary Islands received some 3 million tourists per year. Twenty years later, this had risen to around 10 million, providing 70% of the archipelago's income, valued at 24,553 million Euros.

El pleno sobre el Estatuto, el acto más importante por el Día de Canarias