November 26, 2012

Catalonia Ponders Secession

Christopher Caldwell, Weekly Standard

AP Photo

All of Europe is broke, but Spain is broker, and for a long time Catalonia appeared to be even broker still. For years its public finances have been in disorder and its banks on the verge of collapse. But Catalonia remains the economic, research, and financial powerhouse of Spain. Many of its woes come from the need to carry the rest of Spain—with its bubbles and its scandals and its elaborate patronage systems—on its back. Catalonia has a trade surplus of almost $30 billion with the rest of the country, and loses 10 percent of its gross domestic product to the other regions through transfer programs. When a nationalist march in Barcelona, the capital, on September 11 drew huge crowds, Mas seized the moment to demand a less onerous fiscal compact from Madrid. Since that...

Read Full Article ››

TAGGED: Artur Mas, Spain, Catalonia, Eurozone, Europe

RECOMMENDED ARTICLES

November 20, 2012
Forget Euro Breakup -- Think Euro Mutation
Thomas Mayer, WSJ
The likelier outcome is the emergence of two new currencies that will operate alongside the euro, creating a three-tier monetary union. more ››
November 16, 2012
Merkel Agrees to Pay Up for the Euro
Philip Stephens, Financial Times
Ms. Merkel promised there would be no bailouts; and has since signed up to a procession of well, bailouts. The eurozone now has a permanent rescue system and a central bank that, in extremis, will act as lender as last resort.... more ››
November 24, 2012
Spain Is Heading for a Breakup
Jason Webster, The Independent
It’s the one Arabic word that all Spanish people know – taifa. And well they might. First the Basques, voting in a new, very nationalist parliament, just over a month ago. Now it’s the Catalans’ turn, with... more ››
November 18, 2012
Modernized China Would Be a Place to Fear
DJ Taylor, The Independent
Europe's teetering economy could be toppled in the rush by a liberalised new generation to embrace the standards of the West. more ››
November 15, 2012
Europe Living in a Parallel Universe
Dalibor Rohac, National Review
European elites look straight past the reality looming before them. After the Greek parliament passed a 2013 budget that promises to keep the deficit under 5.2 percent of GDP next year, there has been no shortage of praise for... more ››