He and ERC are now competing for the funding medal in negotiating with Pedro Sanchez

He and ERC are now competing for the funding medal in negotiating with Pedro Sanchez

BarcelonaThe competition between Junts and Esquerra is a tonic in Catalan politics, which has continued since the beginning of the process and, after the new majority resulting from the May 12 elections, remains a key variable in the face of negotiations for secession. Installation of Salvador Illa in Catalonia. Although in 2017 they competed over who was the most unilateral, six and a half years later, with the mathematical result of the Spanish elections on July 23, it became a competition over who would take the greatest amount of the fruits of the negotiations with the Socialist Workers Party. If in recent months everything was focused on amnesty, the financing system is now gaining importance. Watermelons that both Esquerra and Junts agreed to open with the PSOE in this legislature when they decided to support Pedro Sánchez.

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However, as happened with the amnesty, which the Junts and the ERC negotiated at separate tables – only at the last minute coordinated -, with the financing system the same dynamic is drawn. First of all, they claim it in two different contexts. As key players in the formation of the government in Catalonia, Republicans have now put this issue back on the table in order to invest Salvador Illa. A strategy already criticized by Junts: party sources regret that the ERC is asking for this in exchange for support for the Socialist of Catalonia, if Sánchez has already committed to treating him in the country. “And at the same price [el PSOE] “There can be investment on the island as well as budgets in the country,” says a senior Juntaire leader.

The fact is that the party led by Carles Puigdemont is demanding that Esquerra not negotiate funding in exchange for the inauguration of Catalonia, but rather impose conditions on the stability of Pedro Sánchez and state budgets. Puigdemont himself stressed in the 12th election campaign that he would not approve the state accounts for 2025 – which Sánchez needs to continue in the legislature – if there is no legal change to collect all taxes from Catalonia. “Negotiations on private financing for Catalonia should not be linked to negotiations about who wants to be president of Catalonia, but about who wants to have public budgets of the state and government,” Juntes Secretary General Jordi Turol emphasized this week. He is Prime Minister of Spain“. From the left, the Junts are also not immune from criticism. They point out that the ERC will conduct its own negotiations with the PSOE and the PSC, and they warn that if the Junts want to join it, let him do so, but they do not. They want to “perfect the moves”, they say jokingly.

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Aragones financing

The proposal championed by Republicans is one put forward by the state’s acting president, Perry Aragones, in March. The Republican leader at the time defended that Catalonia should hold the key to the fund and set a solidarity quota to contribute to the rest of the autonomous communities. Esquerra called it “individual financing,” which was in fact an almost identical proposal to the financial agreement that former President Artur Mas put on the table in 2012 and which knocked on the door of former Spanish President Mariano Rajoy.

Initially, Aragonés wanted to put forward his proposal within the framework of a new bilateral commission, which was to be established in accordance with the inauguration agreement of the ERC and PSOE during the first quarter of this year. But the Socialist Workers’ Party broke its commitment: so far the first stone has not been laid. For this reason, the ERC’s spokeswoman in parliament, Marta Villalta, this week called on the PSOE to “act and take firm steps” to move towards the economic agreement. The socialists have ruled out this option, whether in Catalonia or in the country. In fact, the PSC’s proposal is to develop a statute, which stipulates that two years after the entry into force of the rule, a “joint” union of the State Tax Administration Agency and the “Catalan Tax Agency” is formed. For now, Republicans are not budging and demanding the key to the box. In this sense, the acting Minister of Economy, Natalia Mas, said on Friday that the consortium proposed by the Socialists would be “acceptable”, as long as it is “with the majority of the general government”, assigned to the Catalan administration and able to do so. From collecting all taxes.

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Necessary cooperation

But to achieve a change in the financing model, both parties need to cooperate. For any reason? Because as happened with the amnesty, which required the support of the entire multinational majority in Congress, any reform that includes a similar system of economic harmony in Catalonia requires reform of the Fundamental Law of Funding of Communities (LOFCA). Therefore, it must be approved by an absolute majority in the Spanish Chamber and an understanding be reached that can reach an agreement between Esquerra and Junts. But not only: also PNB and Bildu – which have always preferred not to get involved in the question of Catalan financing – as well as smaller partners, which this week put themselves at war because they see their territory as Compromís and Xunta Aragonesta.

Will Esquerra and Gantz cooperate again in financing, as they did regarding the amnesty law? The summer, in which the negotiations take place, will be key to finding out, but there is a difference in terms of negotiating judicial limbo: if there is an agreement between Esquerra, PSOE and PSC for new financing, it means that there will be a new government in Catalonia, headed by Illa. A goal – the goal of a peaceful council at the head of the general mandate – is not shared by Juntz, and it is difficult for him to participate in it by participating in an understanding that leads to this horizon. It should be taken into account, in fact, that Puigdemont insists that he wants to try to establish himself in Catalonia, not only with the support of Esquerra but also with the Political and Social Council abstaining from the vote, which implies that Salvador Illa is abandoning the race for the position of Prime Minister. . Generalitat. The Socialist leader has already said both positively and negatively that this will not happen, but Göntz will keep the pressure on by approving (or not approving) the state budget as the main negotiating lever.

Sanchez’s investment agreements already include talk of money for Catalonia

Agreement between PSOE and Junts

One of the points included in the agreement between the PSOE and Junts for the inauguration of Pedro Sánchez is the issue of financing Catalonia. In the section of the letter detailing the issues to be discussed at the negotiating table in Switzerland, in the presence of an international mediator, “overcoming the shortcomings and limitations of autonomy” is detailed. However, it does not specify an agreement on this, but only collects the principled positions of each negotiating party. Together they are committed to drawing up “an amendment to Lucca establishing an exception clause for Catalonia that recognizes the uniqueness with which the institutional system of general government is organised”. In this sense, he adds, “facilitating the transfer of 100% of all taxes paid in Catalonia.” What does the Socialist Workers Party stand for? The document states that the Socialists will bet in these negotiations on measures that allow “financial independence and access to the Catalan market,” as well as “a unique dialogue on the impact of the current financing model.” The need for “a plan to facilitate and promote the return to Catalonia of companies that left in 2017” was also noted.

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Agreement between PSOE and ERC

Aside from the commitment to keep the dialogue table or also move Rodales, the document approved by the PSOE and the ERC for the inauguration of Pedro Sánchez also included addressing the reform of Catalonia’s finances. The two parties promised to open a bilateral committee between the two governments during the first quarter of this year – but this did not happen – to address this issue. It was scheduled to discuss “how to obtain sufficient funding that guarantees the financial adequacy of public services in Catalonia,” as well as “how to ensure compliance with the investment obligations contained in the Catalan Autonomy Law.” The Socialists and Republicans also put forward in writing a “common diagnosis” of the state of the current financing model and demonstrated, for example, that Catalonia was “one of the main economic engines of the state and the third community that provides the greatest amount of resources to the state.” State”, and the parties pledged to “address this issue legally and economically”, as well as “the problem of non-implementation of investments in infrastructure matters” or “breach of investment obligations” stipulated in the statute.

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