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Home » Content » Socialist PSC and Comunes criticise Catalan Government for the absence of regional minister of Catalonia Mas in the Fiscal and Financial Policy Council
PSC and Comunes see the absence of Natàlia Mas in the CPFF as a "mistake". In this respect, Illa also expressed his disagreement, remarking that "the PSC is in favour of fair financing for Catalonia". "I don't want privileges for Catalonia, but I want a level playing field. The same for everyone," he said. The Comunes have also described as a "mistake" the absence of Natàlia Mas at this Monday's CPFF. "We don't think it's right for the government to renounce its maximum representation at a meeting where the reform of financing should begin to be tackled," criticised spokesman Joan Mena at a press conference.

Lluís B. García, Barcelona,

11 December 2023

The leader of the PSC, Salvador Illa, addresses the president of the Generalitat, Pere Aragonès, during a control session.

 Marta Sierra / ACN

Two of the main opposition parties, the PSC and En Comú Podem, have criticised the announcement by the Minister of Economy, Natàlia Mas, of not attending the next meeting of the Fiscal and Financial Policy Council (CPFF), where the Government plans to inform the autonomous communities of the deficit ceiling they will have for the general state budgets of 2024 and to lay the first stone in the debate on the renewal of the autonomous funding system. The Socialists and the Common Socialists have agreed that the absence of the minister in this forum is a “mistake” that is part of the “empty chair” policy of Pere Aragonès’ government “where matters that matter to the Catalans are discussed”.

The first to express his disagreement was the leader of the PSC, Salvador Illa, who in an interview on Ser Catalunya regretted the decision: “I don’t think it’s good not to sit at the tables to defend the interests, in this case, of the Generalitat de Catalunya”, he said, despite the fact that the government has sent the Secretary General of Economy, Josep Maria Vilarrúbia, and the Director General of Budgets, Esther Pallarols, in the place of Minister Mas.

The decision is based on the conviction that the CPFF is not, for the Aragonès government, a space for real debate, but merely “a meeting where information is passed on” and where the Spanish government, with its sole vote, has an absolute majority. Moreover, by virtue of the investiture agreement with ERC, the Republicans cling to the bilateral commitment to undertake negotiations on financing, for which the government is committed to a system of its own for Catalonia.

PSC and Comunes see the absence of Natàlia Mas in the CPFF as a “mistake”.

In this respect, Illa also expressed his disagreement, remarking that “the PSC is in favour of fair financing for Catalonia”. “I don’t want privileges for Catalonia, but I want a level playing field. The same for everyone,” he said.

The Comunes have also described as a “mistake” the absence of Natàlia Mas at this Monday’s CPFF. “We don’t think it’s right for the government to renounce its maximum representation at a meeting where the reform of financing should begin to be tackled,” criticised spokesman Joan Mena at a press conference.

The Comunes want to throw the Hard Rock “into the dustbin of history”.

If PSC and Comunes coincide in criticising this absence, on the other hand, they maintain practically opposite positions with respect to the negotiation of the new budgets of the Generalitat, as a consequence of one of the projects that has become the banner of the debate, the leisure and tourism complex called Hard Rock, which is planned to be built next to Port Aventura (Tarragona). The socialists demand that the Government comply with what was agreed in this year’s budget agreement, which includes the need to approve the Urban Development Master Plan (PDU) – the agreement set a deadline of last July -, while the commons flatly reject this approval if the Catalan government wants to count on them for the next budget.

Mena warned the government that the approval of the project’s PDU is a “red line” for the negotiation of the 2024 budget with his party. After describing the project as an “ecological attack”, the spokesman said that “it is time to throw the Hard Rock into the dustbin of history” and stressed that “we have little to talk about if this proposal is activated” because “the Hard Rock model is not the economic development model that we commoners defend”.

For the PSC it continues to be “one of the priorities”.

Mena explained that in the 2023 accounts they demanded that not a single euro be allocated to Hard Rock, as was the case, although an extra-budgetary agreement was finally approved between the Government and the PSC on this issue; therefore, “if a year ago it was incomprehensible, today it is completely incompatible with the needs of ecological transition” of Catalonia, he insisted.

For their part, the Socialists have not entered into an assessment of the opinion of the Comunes, but have insisted that it is a commitment signed by the President of the Generalitat and that, therefore, it must be fulfilled. However, if this is not done, “they should explain why it has not been fulfilled”, said spokesperson Elia Tortolero. The Hard Rock continues to be for the PSC “one of the priorities” of the commitments reached which, a priori, make the PSC and the Commons incompatible with the 2024 budget.

The PSC asks the Government for a round table of parties to discuss drought, education, and renewable energies

Even so, the socialists continue to reach out to the Government to tackle some of the most pressing issues, such as drought, education, and the promotion of renewable energies. In this sense, the PSC has launched a proposal to the President on Monday: that he convene a round table of parties to analyse these issues. This would be a round table “to tackle specific problems in Catalonia such as the drought, education, renewable energies and health”, Tortolero pointed out, after lamenting that Catalonia has been “wasting time for ten years”.

The Socialists are now particularly critical of education management as a result of the results of the Pisa report: “The education law has not been deployed, but we did not want to reprove any minister to avoid making noise”, apologised the spokeswoman, who insisted on calling on the government to “agree solutions” in education, but also in drought and renewable energies.

https://www.lavanguardia.com/politica/20231211/9440855/psc-comunes-afean-govern-ausencia-consejo-politica-fiscal-financiera.html

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