Government tightens grip on Spain

LAST UPDATED: 18 Jan, 2012 @ 23:14
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Government tightens grip on Spain

THE Junta will be forced to submit its spending budgets to Madrid under new austerity measures.

It comes as the new government tries to prevent a repeat of last year’s overspending by Spain’s regional authorities.

Prime Minister Rajoy will push through a law in March making it mandatory for regional budgets to get central government approval.

“There will be strict controls,” said new Economics Minister Luis de Guindos.

“Before approving their budgets, (the regions) will need the green light from central government.”

Overspending by some regions has been partly to blame for Spain’s inability to meet its 2011 budget target of six per cent of GDP.

The Junta has said it will go along with the measures, despite facing a cut of 1,200 million euros in its budgets for 2012.

However, the move has met with strong opposition from the Catalan government and authorities in the Canary Islands.

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