cristóbal montoro

Catalonia refuses to attend the Autonomous Communities council in protest of decisions made beforehand

August 1, 2012 12:02 AM | CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

Andalusia quits the meeting after one hour. For the first time in democracy, the Catalan Finance Minister did not attend the Fiscal and Financial Policy Council (CPFF), where the Autonomous Community governments and the Spanish Executive discuss the regions’ financial situation and funding. Catalonia refused to attend the CPFF as decisions were taken beforehand by the People’s Party, which runs the Spanish Government and most of the Autonomies for which CPFF decisions are binding. In addition, the Catalan Finance Minister refused to attend the meeting due to Spanish Government’s unilateral decision to oblige the Autonomies to meet a stricter deficit target in 2013, passing from the planned 1.1% to 0.7%. He sent a letter asking for the same flexibility the European Union is giving to Spain.

The Parliament approves the 2012 Spanish Government Budget without increasing investment in Catalonia

May 24, 2012 01:13 AM | CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

Using its absolute majority, the People’s Party (PP) has approved the Spanish Government’s budget for the current year refusing 3,100 amendments from the opposition. Only 3 minor amendments from the opposition parties have been accepted. The budget does not respect the current legislation, which obliges to guarantee a minimum investment percentage to be made in Catalonia in order to compensate for an historical lack of money being put into the Autonomous Community. According to Catalan law, approved by the Spanish Parliament, Catalonia should receive at least 18.66% of all the territorial investment made throughout Spain; however it only receives 11.04%.

Green light for the Catalan Government’s plan of adjusting €4.3 billion to meet this year’s deficit target

May 18, 2012 12:55 AM | CNA

The Catalan Government will adjust its budget by €4.295 billion in 2012, through spend cuts of €2.680 billion and increasing revenue by €1.615 billion. With this plan, the Catalan Government will meet the 1.5% deficit target. The Council of Fiscal and Financial Policy (CPFF), which brings together the Spanish Government and the 17 Autonomies, has approved Catalonia’s budget adjustment plan for 2012-2014. The Spanish Government would pay part of the money owed, but not all of it. The Catalan Government has included a plan B in case the Spanish Government does not honour its fiscal obligations towards Catalonia.

The Spanish Government doesn’t transfer the money, but transfers the blame

April 25, 2012 12:36 AM | CNA

The Spanish Finance Minister, Cristóbal Montoro, blamed the Autonomies and town halls for Spain’s public deficit. Montoro stated that the Spanish Government is meeting the deficit objective for 2012 with the results from the first quarter. However, Catalan MPs reminded Montoro that he is refusing to pay the money it owes Catalan institutions and that with this strategy he transfers the blame for the deficit by not transferring the funds. The Catalan Government directly accused the Spanish Executive for their “massive lie”. According to internal studies from the Catalan Government, the Spanish Executive made incorrect calculations by saying the Autonomies could save €10 billion in healthcare and education with last week’s measures.

The Catalan President threatens early elections if the Spanish Government intervened in Catalonia

April 24, 2012 01:08 AM | CNA

In an interview with the Catalan Public Television Broadcaster, the Catalan President and leader of the Centre-Right Catalan Nationalist Coalition (CiU) recognised that the Spanish Government could intervene the Catalan Government. “It could happen, I won't deny it”, he said. Furthermore, he warned that “the mistrust level will be very high” if the Spanish Government does not pay the money it owes the Catalan Executive. Mas said that “if Madrid wants to intervene Catalonia’s self-government”, he would call early elections. In addition, he said that further budget cuts will be needed.

The Spanish Government refuses Catalonia’s petition to internally split the deficit target more proportionally

March 6, 2012 10:48 PM | CNA

“Absurd, useless, dreadful, and inopportune” is what Spain’s Finance Minister thinks about the Catalan Government’s proposal to internally split the 5.8% deficit target for 2012 more proportionally. The Catalan Government has asked for the Autonomous Communities’ deficit to increase from 1.5% to 1.7% of Spain’s GDP, and the deficit generated by the services directly managed by the Spanish Government to fall from 4% to 3.8%. The Spanish Government believes that it has already undertaken severe austerity measures and that now it is the turn of the Autonomies.

Every party in Catalonia, including the PP, asks for more proportional deficit targets in 2012

March 5, 2012 11:31 PM | CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

There has been a unanimous call in Catalonia for greater flexibility of the deficit objectives applied to the Autonomous Communities for the current year. Every political party in Catalonia, including the People’s Party (PP), has asked the Spanish Government to provide more flexibility to the Autonomies, which manage 40% of Spain’s public spending and run basic Welfare State services. The Spanish Government has set a new deficit target of 5.8% of Spain’s GDP for 2012; internally, the Central Government allowed itself a deficit of 4% and ordered the Autonomies to commit to a deficit of 1.5%. Some Catalan parties have said that the Spanish Government has double standards.

The Autonomies and the Spanish Government agree on a set of measures to guarantee the deficit commitment and liquidity

January 17, 2012 11:48 PM | CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

The Spanish Government stressed that no Autonomous Government will be left disappointed if they have a “responsible” attitude and have an austerity plan in place. However, those failing these measures could be intervened the same way “the European Union” has done with countries such as Greece and Ireland, but without “having their powers taken away”, clarified the Spanish Finance Minister, Cristóbal Montoro. The Autonomous Community governments have renewed their 1.3% deficit objective for 2012 and the Spanish Government has offered additional tools to raise funds and solve liquidity issues. The Catalan Finance Minister, Andreu Mas-Colell, has met bilaterally with Montoro to foster cooperation and discuss the Catalan Government’s claims about the €2.2 billion the Spanish Government owes Catalonia.

The Spanish Government will set a spending limit and sanctions for Autonomies that do not meet the deficit objectives

January 13, 2012 11:26 PM | CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

Catalonia already approved its own spending limit through a law of its own last September. The Spanish Vice President, Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría, explained that the new Budget Stability and Sustainability Law will introduce “mechanism corrections” and “almost automatic” sanctions for public administrations that do not meet the deficit objectives. In addition, before approving their budget, the Autonomies and large city town councils will have to commit to a spending limit and present detailed reports on several aspects of the budget. However, she stressed that each autonomous government will have the freedom to allocate resources.

The Spanish Government threatens to financially asphyxiate the Autonomies that do not meet the deficit objective

January 11, 2012 10:12 PM | CNA

The Spanish Finance Minister, Cristóbal Montoro, announced that the Central Government might heavily fine the governments of Autonomous Communities that do not meet the deficit objective. Montoro, from the People’s Party (PP), met with the regional governments run by his party to prepare a common position on the issue. On the same day, the Centre-Right Catalan Nationalist Coalition (CiU) gave its support to the Spanish’s Government decree to cut public spending and increase taxes, announced at the end of December.