Thursday, 17 July 2008

Platform: Catalonia and the ‘asymmetric’ state, by Genís Barnosell

Those in favour of a one-size-fits-all approach to the debate on the
funding of Spain's autonomous communities say that "asymmetric
solutions" – those that are not the same for everyone – are neither
viable nor fair. Yet, Spain, because of its history, geography and
politics, is by nature "asymmetric."
A clear example of this is the Basque Country. As Lehendakari
Ibarretxe proudly declared after legislation on the economic bilateral
cooperation with Spain was passed in 2002: "Whether in the European
Union, or among federal states or those with the greatest degree of
decentralisation, there is no case like that of the autonomous
community of the Basque Country – and the neighbouring community of
Navarra – in which bodies not belonging to the state have the capacity
to regulate their entire tax system." (Full story in printed edition)