From the Document: "The course of the epidemic was uneven in different parts of the country, so it made sense to have stricter lockdown and social-distancing measures in the areas that were hardest hit, while they should be started to be eased in those less affected, so that economic activity could resume earlier. [...] The business community was becoming particularly restless, noting that other countries were already putting dates to their exit strategies. The pressure on the Spanish government was mounting and we felt it. What was our counter-proposal? First, we realised early on that there was no blueprint for a successful exit. China was the only empirical case that we could study. It had shown that dividing the country into geographical units to choke the spread of COVID-19 [coronavirus disease 2019] was effective. But its units were small (districts) and based on very intrusive 'neighbourhood patrol teams' that would be unacceptable in a democracy like Spain. The experiences of 'testing, tracing and isolating' in countries such as South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore were far more instructive. Taking all of this into consideration, after four weeks of comparative studies and analysing the situation of the virus in Spain, and what was needed to combat it, and following numerous debates and meetings with members of the government, we finally came up with a plan based on four pillars: (1) proper data and healthcare capacities; (2) geographical asymmetry; (3) a two-way street with different speeds; and (4) subsidiarity and co-responsibility."
Expert Comment 21/2020
Elcano Royal Institute
Elcano Royal Institute: http://www.realinstitutoelcano.org/