Rajoy's promises to Catalonia absent from budget
Barcelona (CNA).- Catalonia will receive €1.14 billion worth investment out of 2017 Spain’s budget, which represents 13.4% of the total. Although the percentage is higher than that allocated in last year’s budget (10.7%), in absolute terms it represents €30 million less, since the global investment in the whole of Spain is smaller this year. The figures are a far cry from the major investment that Spanish President, Mariano Rajoy, announced last week for Catalonia. Indeed, he had said that €4.2 billion would arrive in Catalonia by 2020. Spain's Minister of Finance, Cristóbal Montoro, admitted that the budget doesn’t include the announced measures and assured that the investment “will move forward in 2018”. The allocation is still below Catalonia’s contribution to Spain's GDP, which is 19%.
“This is the foundation and in a few months we’ll meet again in this room presenting the budget for 2018,” said Montoro and assured that Rajoy's promised measures for Catalonia would then be reflected in the bill.
He also called for the MPs in the Spanish Parliament to pass the bill, since “every term of office requires a budget” and warned that economic recovery and employment “are at stake”.
€120 million allocated for Barcelona airport connection
The bill for 2017 budget allocates €120 million for the shuttle train which is set to connect Barcelona’s city center with Terminal 1 atEl Pratairport starting in 2018. The budget also foresees €29.1 million for ‘El Quart Cinturó’ (the fourth beltway), one of Catalonia’s most long-awaited road infrastrucutres and an additional €28 million for further road investment within Barcelona’s metropolitan area.
Regarding the commuter and short-distance train network, the bill foresees €64 million investment for the Barcelona metropolitan area. This is ADIF’s highest investment, which totals €76.6 million. The Spanish Government expects to increase this figure to €120 million in 2018 and €182 in 2019. In 2020 the investment is expected to reach €150 million.