The Minister of Finance, María Jesús Montero, announced on Wednesday that the public deficit closed last year below 2.7% of GDP, thanks to the evolution of revenues in the last four months of 2018, the good performance of the economy in the last part of the year and the lowest cost of debt. Spain would have breached the official government deficit target set by Brussels at 2.2% of GDP. However, the socialist government of Pedro Sanchez assured as soon as he reached power in June of last year that he could not adjust the deficit to the Brussels target and that it would stick to a ceiling of 2.7%.
This was pointed out by Montero at an informative breakfast organized by the SER chain in Seville, where he pointed out that in May of last year the Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility (AIReF) already calculated that the closing of the deficit in 2018 would be in 2, 7%, and has assured that the ministry is finalizing the works to officially communicate the data. "But we already have the certainty that we will get down this 2.7%," he added.
This reduction of the deficit target, as indicated, will make Spain exit the excessive deficit procedure, "a matter of extraordinary importance" because it is currently the only country under this supervision mechanism, so that its exit is a sign of "strength , solvency and good work ".
Thus, he has valued the role, "especially" of municipalities and also communities, to reduce the deficit, although he noted that "some municipalities are still struggling to meet their payment commitments." Given this, he recalled the measures approved by the Government last week, which will achieve, in the case of Andalusia, that 171 municipalities save 731 million in five years.
After stating that Spain maintains "a growth rate more robust than the Eurozone and ensuring that" investors trust more in the country's economy of the country's political right, "the minister has called attention to the" devastating effects "that still They are perceptible in society by the economic crisis. "The social elevator has been weakened and 99 percent of the population is poorer and has lost hope of progress," he lamented.
He has recognized that inequality is "a burden" for economic progress and for the stability of countries and has pointed out that the deregulation of financial activity, the reduction of the role of the State and the systematic reduction of taxes in the 1980s of "economic vulnerability".
Against this, has highlighted the measures reached in the nine months of socialist government, with the increase of the Minimum Wage Interprofessional (SMI), increased widow's pension, increased paternity leave, ensure equality plans in companies or the return of income tax for those families who have had a child since 2014. To this has also added the fight against gender violence, which in the General Budgets of the State (PGE) not approved had 220 million, "the highest item of the historical series ".
As for the measures for the ecological transition, Montero has warned of the "opportunity" that represents this area in employment and investment, reaching to create 300,000 new jobs between 2021 and 2030 and an investment of 200,000 million. "It is urgent to undertake this transition to reverse climate change, it is an opportunity and it would be an enormous irresponsibility to let it pass," he assured.
"It is important to be imaginative and courageous to change reality in a situation that can not wait and require transformative measures," said Montero, who has called for bringing the nation's interest to the individual with "viable measures to recover the rights and confidence in politics.
On taxation, the Minister of Finance has argued that "a Treasury that is oriented towards a model with little progressivity, obviating the principle of the Constitution that everyone should contribute to the support of the State", what he does, in his opinion, is " de-legitimize the role of taxes to define the model of coexistence ".
In this sense, he pointed out that the PGE presented by the socialist government went "in a different direction". "They were Objectively Good Budgets for Spain", he said, since he recalled that "they fulfilled for the first time the Statute of Autonomy for Andalusia to have 2,130 million in investments.
Regional financing with Catalonia
Regarding the debate on the new model of regional financing and the role of Catalonia in it, already in the question time, Montero has asserted that "Catalonia has to be in the multilateral forum." "He left because of his abandonment of the common places, but we encourage the Catalan representatives, together with the rest of the communities, to discuss this model in the multilateral forum."
In addition, he insisted that "no agreement or bilateral meeting will be produced, with Catalonia or with any community for the issue of financing." "They will be with light and stenographer in the multilateral forum," he stressed.