When Puig met Pedro

State in­vest­ment set to in­crease for the Va­len­cia re­gion

Costa Blanca News (North Edition) - - NEWS - By Dave Jones djones@cbnews.es

RE­GIONAL pres­i­dent Ximo Puig met Prime Min­is­ter Pedro Sánchez at the Mon­cloa Palace in Madrid last week to dis­cuss is­sues re­lat­ing to the Va­len­cia re­gion.

With both lead­ers hail­ing from the So­cial­ist party (PSOE), Sr Puig was hope­ful of be­ing able to im­prove on the stonewalling which had come from the pre­vi­ous Par­tido Pop­u­lar (PP) gov­ern­ment led by Mar­i­ano Ra­joy.

Af­ter spend­ing more than two hours with the PM, Sr Puig gave a press con­fer­ence in which he high­lighted the ‘po­lit­i­cal will of Sr Sánchez to end the marginal­i­sa­tion of the Va­len­cia re­gion’.

He said the PM had vowed to re­serve 10% of in­vest­ment set aside for all Span­ish re­gions in the 2019 state bud­get for Va­len­cia.

This would mean the re­gion would re­ceive pro­por­tion­ally more funds than in pre­vi­ous years.

“This is the gov­ern­ment putting its prom­ises into prac­tice,” stated Sr Puig.

“They are act­ing to put an end to the un­fair treat­ment that we have re­ceived.”

Sr Puig also re­vealed that Sr Sánchez is work­ing to reach an agree­ment with all the re­gions in Spain to change how monies are al­lo­cated, which would halt un­der­fund­ing for Va­len­cia.

He added: “Sr Sánchez un­der­stands the dif­fi­cul­ties that he will face in or­der to ap­prove a bud­get for 2019.”

This is be­cause the PSOE is rul­ing in mi­nor­ity in the na­tional par­lia­ment and re­quires the sup­port of a num­ber of other par­ties to pass a state bud­get.

Al­though Pode­mos leader Pablo Igle­sias has promised his party’s votes, Cata­lan na­tion­al­ist leader Quim Torra has linked their en­dorse­ment to the hold­ing of a ref­er­en­dum on in­de­pen­dence.

Sr Puig high­lighted that they also talked about Va­len­cia’s crip­pling pub­lic debt of more than €40 bil­lion which, in the main, was run up by pre­vi­ous PP ad­min­is­tra­tions rul­ing the re­gion.

His coali­tion gov­ern­ment has been angling for the state to write off part of the debt as it eats into the monies which Va­len­cia has avail­able to op­er­ate pub­lic ser­vices and in­vest in in­fras­truc­ture projects.

“Sr Sánchez said he would ex­am­ine the ques­tion and he will give an an­swer as soon as pos­si­ble,” ex­plained Sr Puig.

He noted that the PSOE gov­ern­ment has also vowed to in­crease fund­ing by 50% for the re­gion to help peo­ple who care for sick or dis­abled rel­a­tives.

Re­gard­ing Ali­cante prov­ince, Sr Puig re­vealed that the gov­ern­ment will sup­port the in­stal­ment of the cen­tre for stud­ies on age­ing in the city.

He also noted that Castel­lón air­port will be de­clared a ‘pub­lic ser­vice’ and will be taken over by state air­port op­er­a­tor AENA.

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