Europe

British driving licence solution expected in a matter of weeks in Spain

The British Ambassador to Spain, Hugh Elliott, told Spanish newspaper El Periódico De España that talks between the two parties over UK driving licences in Spain are advancing well and that a solution could be just weeks away.

He said: “negotiations are progressing, but they haven’t come to fruition yet. I hope that in the next few weeks we will solve the remaining problems. This is also what our ministers discussed last Saturday. They expressed a willingness to conclude the negotiations, which have taken longer than we would have wished. It is a very unfortunate situation, with thousands of British people living in Spain currently unable to drive. Spain is the only EU country where this is the case. That is why we want it to be resolved as soon as possible. We appreciate the goodwill.

“It is an active negotiation and I am not going to go into details. There has been a process of negotiation with all EU countries. What we are asking for is for British residents to be able to exchange their driving licence for a Spanish one without having to take a new test. Spaniards or other Europeans in the UK can already do that. But here there is a group of thousands of British people who cannot do it. Spain has asked to add to this agreement the exchange of data so that it can have information on tourists, British visitors who come here, to ensure road safety and to be able to send, for example, fines in the event of an offence. It is a complex issue because of the data processing.

“This is a technical issue and we’ve almost got it resolved. We are going to get it. It’s an important issue for the British here and for this embassy,” the Ambassador told El Periódico

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