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Catalan uncertainty paralyzing regional investment, Spain's economy minister says

05 Octobre 2017

The declaration of independence from Spain is expected to follow a debate and vote by pro-independence politicians in the Catalan parliament.

Catalonia's declaration: On Sunday, Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont said voters backed the decision and would move for independence, according to BBC. Genuine democracy is the best way out of Spain's crisis; unfortunately, neither side appears ready to embrace it.

Even so, uncertainty and public unrest in the coming days (or months) could do a fair bit of damage to local businesses and the economy.

The court said it had agreed to consider a legal challenge filed by the anti-secessionist Catalan Socialist Party.

The court said such a move would be "a breach of the constitution".

Leading daily El Pais headlined that the stock market drop was "the worst since Brexit" was approved in a June 2016 referendum.

By leaving Catalonia, Sabadell would remain under the supervision of Spain's central bank and the Eurosystem, the network of central banks responsible for regulating the Euro.

In reply, Spain's finance minister, Luis de Guindos, on Thursday told Bloomberg that independence was out of the question and that there is nothing to discuss until the rule of law is reestablished.

It says it has set up its own tax agency but the region is heavily indebted.

The ban casts doubt on whether Catalonia will be able to successfully secede from Spain.

Hundreds of thousands of Catalans rallied in fury on Tuesday during a general strike over the police violence during the referendum.

The country's prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, earlier urged Catalonia's political leaders to abandon plans to declare independence to avoid "greater evils".

Catalan claims for independence date back centuries but have surged during recent years of economic crisis. The turnout was low - around 42% of the voter roll. In response, the Spanish government has not ruled out the possibility of enforcing Article 155 of the Constitution - an extreme mechanism that could go as far as suspending Catalan self-government altogether. "My arrest is also possible, which would be a barbaric step".

He said that after the completion of the referendum and preparations for the secession, Carles Puigdemont's government took "an irreversible step", and if the Spanish government applies Article 155 of the Constitution, this will also be "a unsafe and irreversible step".

In Wednesday's statement, Rajoy also condemned Puigdemont's criticism of King Felipe VI, who in a rare political speech on Tuesday said the Catalonian referendum organisers showed "disrespect to the powers of the state" and constitutional laws.

Puigdemont has not explained the scope of his proposal for worldwide mediation, whether it would envisage a compromise short of independence or deal only with divorce arrangements.

He also accused the European Commission of having a "double standard" where "all are equal but some are more equal than others" in its refusal to condemn the Spanish government for its undemocratic behaviour towards Catalonian separatists. "But we are prepared, and in no case will it be stopped", she said.

Catalan uncertainty paralyzing regional investment, Spain's economy minister says