Leader of the Centre-Right Catalan Nationalist Party ensures Spanish Labour Market Reform

Prime Minister Zapatero needs the votes from other parties to pass his Labour Market reform. Artur Mas, President of the Centre-Right Catalan Nationalist Party (CiU) has affirmed today that his party will not block the reform in the Spanish Parliament. Ci

CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

June 17, 2010 10:30 PM

Mollet del Vallès (CNA).- The president of the Centre-Right Catalan Nationalist Party (CiU), Artur Mas, has stated that his party will have a “positive attitude” during next week’s debate on the Spanish Labour Market Reform. He has clarified that, despite his opinion that this reform can be “improved”, his group in the Spanish Parliament will not block it, which will facilitate the reform’s final approval.

Spanish Prime Minister Zapatero may be saved once again by the votes in the Spanish Parliament coming from CiU. The Spanish Parliament will discuss on the 22nd of June the reform approved yesterday by Zapatero’s Government. During the debate, changes could be introduced to gather some parties’ votes or, at least, to stop them from voting against the reform and blocking it.

The 10 votes from CiU could save Zapatero’s labour market reform. Zapatero counts on the votes of his party’s group, the Socialist group, which has 169 MPs. However, the absolute majority is 176 votes and thus he lacks MPs to approve it by himself. The 10 votes of CiU could give him the majority if the Socialist group reaches an agreement with the Catalan group on the details of the reform. CiU’s president, Artur Mas, has stated that the attitude of his party will be “positive”, aimed at trying to find an agreement with the Socialists. Two weeks ago, in a quite similar situation, CiU saved Zapatero’s reform to cut the public expenditure and start to reduce the public deficit. It is very likely that it will happen again next week. If the reform does not pass and fails, Zapatero would be in an extremely weak position, and so would the Spanish economy, which has been threatened tirelessly in the last weeks by international financial markets.