February 28, 2021

Expensive occurrences for times of crisis


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The State’s general budgets They have overcome this week one of their main obstacles, being approved by a large majority in the plenary session of the Congress of Deputies. After two years with the extended accounts and an economic scenario completely different from 2018, Spain undoubtedly needed new public accounts. The question is if these are the Budgets that the country needs and if the economic and political cost that Sánchez has paid to obtain the necessary support is worth it.

It is clear that the accounts for next year should be yes or yes expansive. Until the pandemic is controlled, the business fabric needs support in the form of loans, direct aid and an extension of the ERTE, and that costs money. Until the pandemic is controlled, it is necessary to reinforce health spending and educational spending, and although these items are fundamentally framed within the autonomous budgets, the State transfers funds to the autonomies. We all understand that these areas are reinforced with more resources. And, furthermore, if European funds are received, they must be used to make investments that, well used, can help advance towards the digitization and sustainability of the economy. So far nothing to object to public accounts. The problem is that the expansion of spending is not limited to these objectives, but extends Ministry by Ministry and almost item by item. You can tell us that many of these items are parrot chocolate, but let’s not forget that many few make a lot.

This same week, for example, we learned that an amendment to the Budgets for increase by five million one of the items destined to subsidize unions. We can think that five million is very little, and it will not misalign the accounts. But those five million represent an increase of more than 50% the current item, which is 8.8 million. Is it really time to shoot aid to unions? Sincerely, Unless behind this increase there is a hidden intention, such as the attempt to buy social peace at a time of economic crisis, it is not understood. As it is not understood that the spending of all the Ministries is triggered, even before adding the EU funds, when, yes, to distinguish well where we are and who governs, that of the Royal House is frozen. ¿Does it make sense to shoot 70% of the budget of the Ministry of Consumption, created solely and exclusively to give it to Mr. Garzón? I honestly think we all know the answer. The only justification for this increase is that you have to pay the minister and all his advisers, when until very recently, Consumption was integrated into the Ministry of Health.

If we look back, and see what has been done in other moments of crisis, such as in 2012, we see that it was exactly the opposite. Logically, spending soared to deal with unemployment benefits and issues arising from the crisis, but spending by the Ministries was cut by almost 17%. This government could have applied the story so that it is spent on what is really necessary.

But beyond the Budgets for 2021, the declaration of intentions of Podemos, which we remember is part of the Government, suggests that either Europe will prevent it or spending will continue to skyrocket in the coming years. The latest occurrence is the proposal that it has presented together with Bildu and ERC to impose the co-official languages ​​in all institutions, regardless of where we are in Spain. Has anyone thought of what it might cost to turn Congress, the Senate, Social Security, the Tax Agency, the courts of Justice … into towers of Babel? I am very afraid that it would have a cost that we cannot afford nor is worth. Don’t we have a common language that we all speak?

The numbers. The State Budgets for next year foresee an increase in national public spending of more than 25% to approach 210,000 million euros. And if we add the more than 26,500 million that the Government expects to receive from the EU, spending would skyrocket by 41%. If in 2012 the items of the Ministries were cut by almost 17%, next year only one item is frozen, that of the House of the King.

Yolanda Gómez RojoYolanda Gómez RojoDeputy directorYolanda Gómez Rojo

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