Activist and economist Arcadi Oliveres dies at 75

The activist, economist and professor Arcadi Oliveres has died this Tuesday at noon at the age of 75 after a serious illness, as reported by his family in a message on the website ‘Paraules per a l’Arcadi’.

“With a mixture of sadness for the moment, of joy for the experience and gratitude for the love received, The Oliveres Künzi family communicated that Arcadi Oliveres died this afternoon“They have lamented in the statement.

The family added: “We are enormously grateful for the expressions of affection that you have extended to Arcadi during the last weeks, with which you have made him feel loved and accompanied and have helped us celebrate his life “.

A life linked to social movements

Born in 1945 on the left of the Eixample, Oliveres has been all his life linked to associative and political movements. Graduated in Economics from the University of Barcelona, ​​he obtained a doctorate with a thesis on defense economics and began teaching at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB).

In his student days he was linked to clandestine anti-Franco movements like the Democratic Union of Students. He also participated in the 1966 ‘caputxinada’, a clandestine assembly of students held in the church of the Capuchins in Sarrià, under police siege, and in the assembly of Catalonia.

In May 1968 he was prosecuted by the Public Order Court and was tried for clandestine meeting, in a trial of which he was acquitted.

In 1969, after the death of his father, Oliveres had to take the reins of the family business, dedicated to the manufacture of cork and the installation of insulation, in the midst of a crisis in the sector. After a few years, he was forced to liquidate the company, in 1978.

He participated in the incipient neighborhood associationism and in 1974 he began to serve in Pax Christi, an international Catholic organization dedicated to the promotion of the culture of peace and reconciliation among peoples, who would go on to co-chair with Frederic Roda and Àngel Colom.

The organization did campaign against the death penalty in the last years of Franco and he participated in popular marches that demanded ‘Freedom, amnesty and the Statute of Autonomy’. In one of these marches, banned by the government, Oliveres was detained for three days by the Civil Guard.

In 1981 he began military in Justícia i Pau, based on a commission from the then president of the entity Joan Gomis to prepare a report on the 0.7% of GDP for development aid.

In 1986 he was appointed vice president and in 2001 president, after the death of Gomis. From 1986 to 1999 it was Vice President of the General Commission for Justice and Peace of Spain, which brings together the Spanish Justice and Peace commissions and associations. From 1999 to 2003 he also presided over this entity.

Some activities that had the prominent participation of Oliveres were the campaign in favor of 0.7% (1981-82), the first campaign in favor of Tax Objection to military spending and the constitution of the Assembly of Fiscal Objectors (1983), or the campaign against the law regulating conscientious objection and in support of insubordination (1984).

Also did campaign against the entry of Spain into NATO (1986) and co-founded the European Network Against the Arms Trade. He also had an active part in the mobilizations against the first Gulf War (1991) and against the Iraq war (2003), in the campaign for the cancellation of the foreign debt (1999) or in the promotion of ethical banking in Catalonia.

In 2004 he was elected president of the Catalan Federation of Internationally Recognized Organizations, which promotes the international presence of Catalan entities. He also chaired several non-profit associations such as the Catalan Council for the Promotion of Peace or the Catalan Federation of NGOs for Peace.

Regarding political ties, in 2013 he created Procés Constituent together with Teresa Forcades, a movement organized through local and sectoral assemblies that demanded a process to allow the Catalan people to decide “democratically and peacefully” what model of state and country they wanted.