This week their Majesties King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain were guests of honour at a commemorative dinner for the 30th anniversary of newspaper Expansión at the Hotel Westin Palace in Madrid.
In a speech to the three hundred assembled guests from the academic, economic, institutional and business sectors the King said the celebration ‘allows us tonight to remember and underline the recognition and constitutional protection that deserve the rights to freely communicate or receive truthful information by any means of dissemination, As well as to express and freely spread thoughts, ideas and opinions by word, writing or any other means of reproduction. This is essentially the meaning of our commitment here today since the journalistic work done from these constitutional principles is fundamental in any democratic society.’
King Felipe praised the paper for: ‘30 years of demanding professional work to inform the citizen in the economic field, to guide and help the consumer, 30 years providing a truly useful and effective service to business and economic agents who, during these last decades, have contributed to the economic progress of Spain.’
He also emphasised that: ‘Expansión has responded with professionalism to the growing demand for information on companies and markets in an environment of great global economic transformation, both in periods of economic development and in difficult times of crisis and recession. And I am happy to say that, as a good Spanish newspaper, attentive to the projection – and international adventure of our economy, it has accompanied our entrepreneurs in their openness towards Iberoamerica and the rest of the world.’
Speaking about the difficulties inherent to the technological innovation of the modern age King Felipe warned that: ‘the quality of information also requires preserving the values on which journalism has been built, which should never be compromised by technological advances…The contrast of information, truthfulness, rigour, professionalism, impartiality and accountability should not be subject to expiration because they are the basis of freedom of information are permanent values of the very essence of journalism. Every democratic society demands of them.’
The King’s speech was followed by a dinner at which King Felipe and Queen Letizia sat at the presidential table with the Ana Pastor, President of the Congress of Deputies and Ana Isabel Pereda, the director of the Expansión newspaper, amongst others.