Spanish Parliament Approves Government's Spending Plan Goal

(Bloomberg) -- Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez won parliamentary support for his budget goal as Catalan separatist parties voted to back the target.

The lower house voted to back a spending plan that would be in line with a 1.8% deficit goal. The motion, part of the process for sending the 2019 budget to parliament, passed with support from Catalan separatist parties PDeCat and ERC.

While giving an insight into Spain’s political mood, the vote doesn’t make it any more likely that Sanchez’s minority government will be able to pass his budget bill when he presents it to parliament as soon as next month. If, as expected, an upper house controlled by the People’s Party, blocks the budget goals, Sanchez will have to present a budget based on the 1.3 percent deficit goal of the previous government.

Sanchez said earlier this month he would submit his budget to parliament in January, even though for now he has no guarantee he can get it passed. If the opposition parties choose to block it, he will be able to blame them for voting against spending pledges including a higher minimum wage that are aimed at rolling back austerity measures put in place during Spain’s financial crisis.

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.