Economists’ association calls for end to suspension of Catalan self-rule
Application of Article 155 causing “slowdown of economy’s agility”
The Association of Economists of Catalonia has called for an end to the imposition of Spanish rule over the country. The application of Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution, which enabled the stripping of Catalonia’s autonomy, has created an “extraordinary, anomalous, and dysfunctional situation,” stated the president of the association’s committee, Modest Guinjoan. “It has no justification in a minimally advanced society,” he asserted.
According to Guinjoan, Spain’s intervention in Catalan affairs is causing problems for the economy. “A part of the Catalan economy [the public sector] is running with its leg tied,” he lamented.
Article 155, applied after the Catalan government declared independence in October last year, is bringing about a “slowdown of the agility of the economy,” said member of the commission, Jordi Goula. Thus, it is making “a small impact on the great figures of the Catalan economy,” but puts “obstacles” in the way of the Catalan administration, as well as blocking small expenses,” Goula stated.
Despite this, Goula highlighted that Catalonia has overcome the “slump” of the final quarter of last year in relation to consumption and tourism, while Guinjoan predicted a positive 2018, especially with regard to exports.
2017, a record-breaking year
Catalan exports went up to 70.8 billion euros in 2017, a record-breaking figure for the seventh consecutive year. According to figures from Spain’s Ministry of Economy, Catalonia’s sales abroad continue to grow, last year seeing an 8.7% increase over 2016.