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The negotiation between the government and the Generalitat opens today with economic affairs

Minister Meritxell Batet to chair the Bilateral Commission

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The negotiation between the government and the Generalitat opens today with economic affairs

The stage of distension that has opened between governments of Pedro Sánchez and firm begins today to materialize with meetings that Vice-President of Generalitat, Pere Aragonès, will maintain with Vice-President, Carmen Calvo, and Minister of Finance, María Jesús Montero. According to sources aware of both meetings, first appointment will have a "political" and probably issues will be derived to bilateral commission state-Generalitat. It will be at meeting with head of Treasury when it is possible to address more punctual issues. One of priorities of Catalan government is flexibilization of deficit objectives, which this year is fixed in 0.4% of gross domestic product (GDP) for all Autonomous Communities.

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The Moncloa attaches utmost importance to meeting with Calvo. It is not so much because of it that concrete decisions are derived, but by progress towards a normalization of relations between two Governments, despite enormous discrepancies. The central executive will elect his representatives on Bilateral commission this Friday, although it is already decided that Minister of Territorial Policy, Meritxell Batet, will chair it. The government has also already commissioned reports on 16 Catalan laws suspended by Constitutional Court after being appealed by previous government, which was chaired by Mariano Rajoy.

The spokesman for government, Elsa Artadi, announced last Tuesday that after meeting between two presidents would begin some meetings of a bilateral nature between ministers and councillors. Montero and Aragonès will begin round, thus giving priority to economic issue. Sources of Catalan executive assured that vice-presidency, Economy and Finance Department is committed to achieving financial equilibrium. Proof of this is communication that just two weeks ago sent to all councils to stop spending at "high risk" of failing to meet this year's deficit target.

For first time since beginning of recession, Catalonia was placed within authorized margins last year. However, government of Generalitat hopes to drain this gap between expenses and income in a more leisurely way than anticipated. In 2020, it should be in a "zero-deficit" situation, which means reducing about 1.2 billion euros.

In his first parliamentary appearance as Vice-president, Aragonès said that this would be one of objectives of meetings he will keep with Montero. But it is not only point on agenda that vice president takes to Madrid. Among or issues, resources must be addressed to social laws that Government of PP led to Constitutional Court, control of finances of Generalitat and debt that executive of administration of central government with Catalonia in Matter of infrastructures, dependence or financing of Mossos D'Esquadra, and which sources of department that directs Aragonès already situate in about 7 billion of euros.

Aragonès will also decide wher to go to Fiscal and Financial Policy Council (CPFF). Although Artadi has been emphatic on several occasions in saying that y will not go, vice-President does not close door to that possibility. Sources of counseling Remember that Aragonès doctrine consists of being present to all forums where issues are discussed that involve Catalan economy.

In his parliamentary appearance, Vice-President regretted that at time when CPFF was presided over by Cristóbal Montoro, documentation on meeting was provided on same day, which gave no room to prepare anything. Despite remembering that he prefers bilateral meetings, Aragonès argued that if that changed, Generalitat should consider going to CPFF.

However, for central executive today's meeting is relevant but insists that it will be in bilateral where potential of possible agreements is manifested as leaders of both ERC and Junts per Catalunya, who make up government. The Generalitat has already chosen its representatives for this meeting and central government will do same this next Friday although government sources confirm that on side of government of Pedro Sánchez, minister of Territorial Policy, Meritxell Batet.

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