Jordi Cami Foto Autor Jordi Cami Foto Cataleg

The pedestrian border crossings at Biutz and Barrio Chino in Spain’s North African territories of Ceuta and Melilla daily see thousands of Moroccans endlessly queuing to enter these cities and take part in broad daylight in an institutionalised form of smuggling, with the tacit approval of the Moroccan and Spanish governments.

The reason for this illegal trade lies in the difference in the prices of goods imported through the free ports of Ceuta and Melilla. This lucrative business does not lead to any kind of development, quite the opposite in fact, as the jobs it creates are precarious, and tantamount to slavery; it is unstable and dangerous, while at the same fuelling a black-market economy, and worse still, it fosters and institutionalises widespread corruption.