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What the ' procés ' silenced

Five years of institutional paralysis over disagreements between the Generalitat and the government have been billed to infrastructure and all public services

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What the ' procés ' silenced
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November 2010. A Artur but still in shooting as a candidate for Generalitat is solemnly directed to Catalan businessmen to assure m that government that wants to lead will give maximum priority to infrastructure that at that time is in mouth of all sectors Economic and social Catalans. This is so-called fourth belt, a toll free freeway that must surround metropolitan area of Barcelona and decongest its access. It was a long-claimed work that previous governments, tripartite on left, had slowed down for environmental reasons.

Seven years later, places where this highway was to be run are still mostly farmland. The few sections that have been built, in an unrelated way, have finally been in charge of central government but neir project nor work have a date of completion.

The fourth belt, a work of state competition but that needed competition of Generalitat, is most paradigmatic example of delay in infrastructures that drags Catalonia. And this is not only due to economic crisis that so many works have paralyzed. The process of independence initiated by more in 2012 and later refusal of government of Mariano Rajoy to negotiate transfers and outstanding works have left in a wasteland program of infrastructures of Catalonia. The dialogue between Governments has vanished and, with it, large public works projects.

Not only have infrastructures been resentful of five years of political conflict and disagreements between administrations. The transfers of new skills have been interrupted and in many cases, historical opportunity to achieve m seems to have been buried definitively. Little or nothing remains of agreement reached between government and Generalitat in 2009 to transfer airports of Girona and Reus to Generalitat. With subsequent privatization of AENA and absolute lack of tuning between Governments, parties have moved on to this claim.

The independence process has left in background several problems that Catalonia suffers. The country begins today a series that will review those issues that have been relegated to public debate because of space that has occupied independence challenge. Among m are issue of infrastructure, health, education, social services and corruption.

Because landscape of infrastructure is repeated in all that concerns public services. The independence process has acted as a big black hole that has absorbed social unrest stemming from crisis and cuts and has launched it against central government and state, which always said to trust that thinning of situation in Catalonia was Juncture, "a soufflé", in mouth of more than one minister.

Few nationalist politicians have dared to verbalize clearly that process has served to "cover" less amiable part of Catalan politics. He did Santi Vila, exadvisor wayward of Artur Mas and Carles Puigdemont, who always had a foot in independence and anor in realpolitik. In 2014, when he was a territory councillor, Vila admitted that sovereignty process was "allowing m to withstand" four years of adjustments and cuts. Vila said that sovereignty was a "minimally exciting" project that avoided social frustration. "If this country had not had a nationalist-key narrative, how would it have withstood some adjustments of more than 6 billion?" He came to ask at a conference with entrepreneurs.

It is not that in Catalonia re has been no mention of health, poverty, education or social policies. Nor has Generalitat done anything to solve problems. Simply, what has motivated procés is to derive to Madrid, Central government or Congress of Diptutados, how many mismatches, failures, frustrations and problems, arose when dealing with se problems. And when problems originated in central government, by action or omission, problem was alleged lack of cooperation or mismanagement of Generalitat. and thus to infinity. The result: whole social agenda has ended up conditioned by a parallel political process that neir advanced nor unlocked or issues.

Three unfinished legislatures with ir corresponding electoral advances — all motivated by sovereignty process — have also not helped visible problems that were systematically left in drawer. There is no debate in which some candidate does not promise to end problems of outskirts or give definitive shelve to health cuts. But neir one nor or has just curdled. Meanwhile, trucks and cars are still stuck in accesses to Barcelona. The fourth belt, in much of its route, remains a moor.


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