Zapatero signals Madrid will take on Catalonia

17th October 2005, Comments 0 comments

17 October 2005, MADRID — Spain's central govenment will reserve the right to collect taxes on companies and VAT in all of the country's regions, including Catalonia, prime minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero said.

17 October 2005

MADRID — Spain's central govenment will reserve the right to collect taxes on companies and VAT in all of the country's regions, including Catalonia, prime minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero said.

Coming in the midst of negotiations between the nation's political forces over the Catalan regional government's new statute, Zapatero's words were a sign his government wants to drastically reform the Catalan 'statute'.

The so-called statute, approved last month by the regional parliament in Barcelona, called for greater control of taxes, said Catalonia was a 'nation' and demanded more control over its own education system.

But speaking to SER radio station, Zapatero signalled he wants big changes made to the ambitious document, before it is passed by Congress.

Zapatero has to play a political balancing act as his government depends for a majority in the parliament on the support of some Catalan regional nationalist parties.

But despite that he seems prepared to take them and risk losing their support.

The Spanish parliament is due to start debating the issue next month, but it could take up to a year before they come to some decision.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news


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