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Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs defends the legality of the new department

Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs Raül Romeva assured that he is “not worried at all” about the legality of this new Ministry. Thus the cross-party list ‘Junts Pel Sí’ top member responded to the Spanish government’s claim that the new department may violate some of the Spanish government’s functions. Foreign affairs “is a competence which is attributed to Catalonia and recognised in the Catalan Statute of Autonomy” assured Romeva and emphasised that the actions to be launched “are the same” as those carried out by the Catalan Foreign Affairs Secretary, Roger Albinyana. Romeva called for “finding synergies with other European actors” rather than “having embassies everywhere”, which he described as a 19th century policy. Romeva also forecast that former Catalan President Artur Mas will have an “important” role in the international agenda.

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18 January 2016 02:29 PM

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ACN

Barcelona (CNA).- Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs and cross-party list ‘Junts Pel Sí’top member, Raül Romeva, responded to the Spanish government’s claim that the new Catalan Ministry may violate some of the Spanish government’s functions. Foreign affairs “is a competence which is attributed to Catalonia and recognised in the Catalan Statute of Autonomy”assured Romeva and emphasised that the actions to be launched “are the same”as those carried out up to now by the Catalan Foreign Affairs Secretary, Roger Albinyana. Romeva also defended against those who accused the Catalan Government of investing huge amounts of money in the international strategy. “The Spanish ambassador in Morocco’s residence costs 6 million euros and all the Catalan Delegations less than 3 million”he stated. Romeva called for finding “synergies with other European actors”rather than “having embassies everywhere”, which he described as a 19th century policy. Romeva also forecast that former Catalan President Artur Mas will have an “important”role in the international agenda.


“We will not allow any action which could be contrary to the Constitution or to the laws, whatever it may be”warned current Spanish Government Vice President Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría soon after the new Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs took office. This Monday, former MEP Raül Romeva explained the functions of the new Ministry in an interview with Catalan public television channel TV3 and defended its legality. “There is no reason at all to be worried”he stated and added that the foreign affairs actions of the new department will continue to be the same as those carried out by the Catalan Secretariat for Foreign Affairs headed by Roger Albinyana. “Legally [foreign affairs] is a competence which is attributed to Catalonia and recognised in the Catalan Statute of Autonomy”, nuanced Romeva.

“Finding synergies”rather than “having embassies everywhere”

Regarding the budget of the new Ministry, Romeva explained that only 3 million of the 19 million which the department has at its disposal is destined for the Catalan “embassies”. The Government currently has 9 international delegations and 17 more are planned for diplomatic tasks, as well as touristic, cultural and economic promotion. 

Romeva defended that the Catalan Government’s foreign affairs strategy will be very different from the Spanish strategy. “We have to find synergies with other European actors”stated Romeva, as “having embassies everywhere is a logic more proper of the 19th century”. “The Spanish ambassador in Morocco’s residence costs 6 million euros and all the Catalan Delegations less than 3 million”he stated.  

Mas as an asset for the international strategy

Romeva also referred to Artur Mas and outlined his international projection. “He could be recognised as an authority by many actors”he stated and called for Mas to have an “important”role in the Government’s international agenda.

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  • Image of new Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs, Raül Romeva, receiving the portfolio from Catalan Foreign Affairs Secretary, Roger Albinyana (by ACN)

  • Image of new Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs, Raül Romeva, receiving the portfolio from Catalan Foreign Affairs Secretary, Roger Albinyana (by ACN)