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Barcelona over the last two decades ever since being awarded the Olympic games back in 1982 has gone from strength to strength and has utilised its potential as the gateway between Iberia and the rest of Western Europe , re-establishing itself again as a major port that can compete with the best of them , the likes of Marseilles and Genoa.


Barcelona is one of the largest industrial centre's of Spain, with a strong background in manufacturing based on textiles like shoes and as attracted several of the larger motor manufacturers who have opened motor production plants. Other major employers include the port of Barcelona and several chemical and pharmaceutical research plants along with design, publishing and advertising.


Although Barcelona has a stock market it has never really made it as a major financial or banking centre unlike Madrid. However it does host the country’s major convention and trade fairs.


The hosting of the Olympic Games back in 1992 was a the one event  which transformed the fortunes of the city and provided the investment necessary to improve the entire infrastructure of the city. A total investment of nearly five billion Euro was pumped into financing the games in a massive marketing project which successfully promoted the city as an efficiently run, business-like city which initiated further investment in the hotel and tourism sectors.


Today, over 40% off all visitors  to Spain come to Barcelona The number of tourists visiting the city has risen too, from 1.7 million in 1990 to over 3.5 million in 2006.


The business community in Barcelona is accustomed to hosting foreign visitors and many international business people speak English or French. Catalan is used in a business setting among native speakers; otherwise Castilian Spanish is used.


Business hours are normally 8am -9am to 6pm - 7pm,  with an extended lunch break between 1.30am and 3pm. These hours can vary depening on the size and type of the business




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