Catalonia rejects new deficit targets set by Spain
The Catalan Vice President and Minister for Economy and Tax Office, Oriol Junqueras, voted against the new regional deficit target of 0.6% of GDP agreed between the Conservative People’s Party (PP) and the Spanish Socialists (PSOE). During the Council on Fiscal and Financial Policies (CPFF, going by its Catalan initials) on Thursday evening, Junqueras said that the target is “absolutely far from what citizens need and deserve”. The Catalan Government had asked for a 1.18% deficit target for 2017, but the Autonomous Communities’ limits were set instead at 0.6% for next year, 0.3% for 2018 and 0% of GDP for 2019. They were accepted despite the opposition of Catalonia, the Balearic Islands and Valencia. The communities led by the PSOE abstained. The Spanish Finance Minister, Cristóbal Montoro, celebrated the fact that only three territories voted against the measure, saying there was a “good atmosphere” at the meeting.