THE General Secretary of the Majorcan Socialist coalition (PSM-EN), Biel Barcelo, said yesterday at the European Parliament that the Balearics should have direct representation in Brussels. Barcelo claimed it was the only way to avoid what he described as the economic descrimination currently suffered by the Islands.
Barcelo was taking part yesterday in a debate in Brussels entitled Independence in Europe: Equality for the nations of the 21st century, organised by the Free Europe Alliance - a political group of which the PSM-EN forms part. The PSM-EN are claiming that if the Balearics had direct representation as opposed to through the Spanish nation, the region would avoid the economic disadvantages it suffers by virtue of it being an island. Barcelo pointed out that the Balearics could be given full recognition for island status such as that currently enjoyed by Malta and Cyprus.
Barcelo claimed that if the Balearic Islands were given the same financing as other island regions of the European Union, it would have received nearly 500 million euros for public spending as opposed to the 131 million euros allotted to it between 2007 and 2013, four times less. Speaking in Catalan, Barcelo also called for the widening of the democratic process within the European Union so that regional parliaments could apply for independence within the EU framework.