Spain’s Catalonia seeks own tax system

Catalan MonitorPressTV

Spain’s Catalonia seeks own tax system (PressTV)

The government of Catalan President Artur Mas has enlisted a former Spanish tax inspector, Joan Iglesias, to prepare the administration to collect its own taxes. Iglesias said on Friday that the Catalan tax authority could collect about €100 billion (USD113 billion) in taxes a year, more than the €65 billion (USD72 billion) needed for an independent Catalan state.

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Catalan Tax Rebels Dig In for Battle to Escape From Spain

Catalan MonitorBloomberg

Artur Mas (Bloomberg)

A doctor, a graphic designer and a lawyer from Catalonia are road-testing a mechanism for paying taxes that could give the regional president, Artur Mas, a decisive weapon in his campaign to force independence from Spain.

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Catalan Independence Push Opens Divisions in Mas’s Party

Catalan MonitorBloomberg

Artur Mas (Bloomberg)

Mas’s decision to plow ahead with preparations for a Catalan state in defiance of the Spanish government is creating tensions between Convergencia and Unio, the two parties that form his CiU movement. Unio’s Ramon Espadaler, home affairs chief in the regional government, said he opposes a unilateral declaration of independence and Mas, who leads Convergencia, shouldn’t make any moves without the approval of national authorities in Madrid.

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Le président catalan veut préparer l’Etat régional à l’indépendance

Catalan MonitorLa Tribune

Le président catalan veut préparer l'Etat régional à l'indépendance (La Tribune)

Le président de la Generalitat, le gouvernement régional catalan, Artur Mas, a annoncé mardi 17 février, un plan pour « déconnecter » la région de l’Espagne. Ce plan s’inscrit dans le cadre de la convocation, le 27 septembre prochain, des comices électoraux catalans. Cette élection sera très particulière puisque les partis indépendantistes veulent en faire un scrutin « plébiscitaire », autrement dit une sorte de référendum de fait sur l’indépendance de la Catalogne.

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Spain: bullfighting war resumes in Barcelona

Catalan MonitorANSAmed

The bullfighting war returns to Barcelona. The Popular Party government has started an offensive to re-open the ‘plazas de toros’ in Catalonia and secure the legislation so that no region can ban fighting, as occurred three years ago in the Catalan autonomous community.

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The Catalan Labyrinth: Independence or constitutional reform?

Catalan MonitorCatalan Assembly, Longform

2015 – a super election year for Spain – is unlikely to offer new approaches that could lead to a solution. However, should the government constellation in Madrid change, offers to Catalonia and discussions about a constitutional reform could become quite possible in 2016. If such a development does not take place, a possible separation of Catalonia from the Spanish State can no longer be ruled out.

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Better off on their own? Economic aspects of regional autonomy and independence movements in Europe

Catalan MonitorNews Roundup

Europe – autonomy movements focused in prosperous regions (DB Research)

It is striking that there are very persistent regional income disparities within the countries examined. Most of the regions that have a high per capita income in relation to the rest of the country have ranked at the top or at least near the top of the standings for decades. This aspect might have reduced acceptance of the idea of horizontal redistribution between regions.

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100 weeks explaining Catalonia on Twitter

Catalan MonitorDIPLOCAT

100 weeks explaining Catalonia on Twitter (DIPLOCAT)

The Twitter account, @CatalanVoices, welcomes its 100th participant this week. The Colombian musicologist Patricia Caicedo, who lives in Catalonia and will tweet this week from the @CatalanVoices Twitter account, is the 100th participant of a project that began exactly 100 weeks ago with American publisher Liz Castro, editor of the book “What’s up with Catalonia?”.

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“You, a convicted minister!” – namecalling and mudslinging in the Catalan parliament

Catalan MonitoropenDemocracy

"You, a convicted minister!" - namecalling and mudslinging in the Catalan parliament (openDemocracy)

One thing is certain: the courts’ repeated rulings against Rigau’s ministry do sound a bit biased; they don’t  acknowledge the awesome job that’s been carried out in Catalonia – bilingualism can now be universally achieved: a synaptic feast. In a land where the levers of power have lately been in the hands of native Catalan speakers, making the language available to everyone is an act of generosity.

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The European regions that could be better off going it alone

Catalan MonitorThe Telegraph

The European regions that could be better off going it alone (The Telegraph)

“Nearly all the regions are among the wealthiest in their respective countries,” said Barbara Boettcher, an economist at Deutsche Bank. “The patently unequal treatment of regions appears detrimental to the general acceptance of the current system.”

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Deutsche Bank says that tax pillaging feeds independence

Catalan MonitorVilaweb

Deutsche Bank says that tax pillaging feeds independence (Vilaweb)

In a report (pdf) published this week, Deutsche Bank criticises the share-out of wealth among the territories of the Spanish state. It highlights the Catalan process towards independence and explains that the poor distribution of resources is one of the principal causes of it, in addition to the political reasons.

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Peter Geoghegan: The People’s Referendum

Catalan MonitorHerald Scotland

Herald Scotland

Anyone wanting to take stock of the events of 2014 could do worse than to include this book on their reading list. It’s a snapshot of the varied shades of opinion in Scotland at the height of its engagement with politics, and highlights how attitudes towards independence were partly moulded by the history and economic conditions of each of its regions.

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Catalonia to open 50 missions worldwide [VIDEO]

Catalan MonitorPressTV

PressTV interviews Catalan journalists on independence

After many failed attempts to bring the Spanish government to recognize an unofficial popular vote on the independence of Catalonia, the government of Artur Mas has announced it will open diplomatic missions in 50 locations around the world.

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Jordi Domingo: ‘Spain has never broken away from Francoism’

Catalan MonitorVilaweb

Jordi Domingo: ‘Spain has never broken away from Francoism’ (Vilaweb)

Jordi Domingo, lawyer, answers to the questions of the ‘Faces of independence’ series, in which well-known figures from around the country explain why they want independence and what an independent Catalonia might bring the world.

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Judge Vidal about to get the sack over draft Catalan Constitution

Catalan MonitorAra

Judge Vidal about to get the sack over draft Catalan Constitution (Diari Ara)

Antonio Fonseca, the member of Spain’s General Council of the Judiciary (CGPJ) tasked with disciplinary action, accuses the Catalan judge of “being actively involved” in the drafting of a Catalan Constitution “entirely on his own accord”.

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Why Catalonia needs an Edinburgh Agreement

Catalan MonitorBlog

Scottish Conservative MEP Ian Duncan

“It remains unclear how the Catalan conundrum will be resolved. […] My gut feeling is that the issue will only be resolved when the politicians from Barcelona and Madrid sit in the same room and hammer out their own Edinburgh Agreement. Then it will work.”

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An independent Catalonia: is it a dream?

Catalan MonitorL'1dex

Marti Anglada interviewed by L'1dex

“It was an open and sincere discussion revolving on sensitive subjects, which quite often are not well understood by the Swiss, bred as we are on direct democracy and referenda. Sensitive subjects, which are almost always reviewed by our press under the light of the Madrid environment, where most of our correspondents live.”

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Spanish govt. studies appeal to Constitutional Court against opening of Catalan govt. delegations in Rome, Vienna

Catalan MonitorVilaweb

Spain's Foreign Minister Margallo (Vilaweb)

The Spanish Foreign Minister, José Manuel García-Margallo, has announced that the Spanish government is studying the possibility of bringing a contentious administrative appeal before the Spanish Constitutional Court over the opening of Catalan government delegations in Rome and Vienna and the Law of foreign action approved by the Parliament of Catalonia on 26 November 2014.

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Catalonia to open 50 delegation offices

Catalan MonitorPressTV

Catalan independence, by PressTV

The Catalan government has announced that it aims to open some 50 embassies across the globe to represent the interests of Catalonia, a region in northeastern Spain that seeks independence.

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