Departing U.S. envoy says he will be the "best ambassador for Spain."

Madrid, Jun 12 (EFE).- The departing U.S. envoy to Spain, Alan D. Solomont, said here Wednesday that after leaving his post he will be "the best ambassador" for the Iberian nation.

At a conference on U.S.-Spanish relations organized by the Elcano Royal Institute, Solomont said that, besides "unpopular but necessary" economic reforms, Spain needs "political reform" to increase citizen participation.

"It's very good that the people are demonstrating peacefully but it's not enough," said the envoy.

Solomont called bilateral relations "robust" and added that Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's planned visit to Washington for talks with President Barack Obama will take place "sooner than later," but not before the arrival of the new U.S. ambassador to Spain, James Costos.

He also insisted that relations between Madrid and Washington do not depend on what party is in power.

"Relations have become very strong in areas like the fight against international crime and ... climate change," he said, noting the both countries have "very aligned interests" and therefore "Spain is a very strong partner for the United States."

The Elcano Royal Institute is a private foundation that was created to serve as a forum for analysis and discussion of international current events.

Spain's Crown Prince Felipe is the honorary president of the institute.