The leader of the Partido Popular, Biel Company, yesterday expressed his concern over the findings of a report by the Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility whoich reveals that the Balearic economy grew more slowly than in other regions in the second quarter with the exception of Castile-La Mancha. Growth was 0.2% of GDP compared with a Spanish average of 0.5%.
Speaking yesterday, he said that during the debate for the 2019 budget, the PP had pointed to there being just two per cent growth this year.
However, the “acolytes” of President Armengol maintained that it would be 2.7%. “Unfortunately, we were right.”
Company added that when Armengol became president in 2015 there was four per cent growth. “This year, we’ll be getting two per cent,“ he observed, while also questioning what the minister for the economic model and employment, Iago Negueruela, had been doing for the past four years.
This is because the minister has now announced measures to stimulate the economy. In Company’s view, the government passed legislation designed to slow the economy.
Examples of this were tourism legislation, which had previously facilitated investment, and farming and land laws.
With the decrease in growth, Company continued, “people will be going on the dole”.
In fact, he claimed, there are hoteliers who are giving employees holidays during high season. “These problems are thanks to Señor Negueruela and Señora Armengol.”
The authority monitors public-sector economic and financial performance. Its latest report shows that annual growth in the Balearics (June this year compared with June 2018) was two per cent. The national average was 2.5%.
The Balearic government says that the authority’s figures are correct and that they reflect a normalisation and maturation of the economic cycle.
The finance ministry explains that there has been cumulative growth of 14.1% over the past five years, the highest since the introduction of the euro.
A brake now being applied to growth represents a normalisation of the cycle.
The ministry also notes that the Balearic economy was one of the first to start to grow after the 2008 financial crisis.
Parliamentary spokesperson Antonio Costa believes that this normalisation is a clear indication of economic deceleration. He suggests that the government is behaving like in 2008, when a PSOE-led administration did not want to admit to impending crisis. “This deceleration is very concerning, especially as the government is insisting in not taking urgent measures.”
Costa adds that while the economy is cooling, there are parties in government (Més) which are talking of the need for there to be “de-growth”. “The government is not taking the problem seriously, and the consequences could be serious.”