History repeats itself: the Spanish state has again invested much less than it promised to in Catalonia. According to the latest data on the execution of the 2021 budget, the state invested in Catalonia only 35.8% of what it committed to in the annual budget, agreed between Pedro Sánchez's minority government, with the support of Catalan pro-independence parties ERC and the PDeCAT, among others, according to date published this Monday by the Spanish treasury. In total, 739.8 million euros were allocated to Catalonia of the 2,068.1 million euros initially planned in the Spanish government's accounts, which translates into the fact that Catalonia was the Spanish autonomous community most punished in percentage terms. At the other end of the scale, as usual, we find Madrid, which saw state investments in its region amounting to 184% of what was planned, with an initial planned figure of 1.22 billion euros in investment mushrooming to reach a figure of 2.09 billion euros that was actually spent.
The two most flagrant cases are those of the two state rail companies, the operator Renfe and the infrastructure company Adif, which executed much less than they had planned. In the first case, we see that only 34.6% of the planned investment in Catalonia was carried out, that is, only 90.6 million of the more than 262 million euros initially planned was spent. As for Adif, only 23.9% of its forecast investments were carried out, with 169.1 million executed out of the 707.4 million budgeted.
Another way to look at this data is as per capita investment. In the case of Catalonia, each citizen received a total of 95.1 euros, the third lowest in the whole of Spain, and the only others that were lower were Navarra, with 75.6 euros per capita - a different case because it has a special economic concert - and the Valencian Country with 92.7 euros per inhabitant. Figures that were less than a third of the investment per capita in communities such as Murcia (383.7 euros per inhabitant), Aragon (333.9 euros) and Madrid (307.7 euros).
Where were the investments made?
Another question is where the 739.8 million invested in Catalonia went. The breakdown in today's figures shows that 153.1 million euros were channelled into the General State Administration, with an execution rate of 91.1%, including 141.1 million euros invested through the transport, mobility and urban agenda ministry, with a 86.2% of its budget implemented, and 2.1 million euros from the interior ministry, 86.2% of planned spending. On the other hand, in other areas, such as the employment and social economy ministry, the degree of execution was 4.6%, a total of 36,117.08 euros.
Secondly, in the autonomous state bodies and other entities dependent on the General State Administration, a total of 52.6 million euros was invested, well above the 1.5 million euros initially foreseen, including extraordinary contributions to bodies affiliated in the areas of ecological transition and demographic challenge as well as science and innovation, with 44.9 million euros. Thirdly, there are the entities of the state's administrative sector that received 18.7 million euros, 161.8% of what the budget allocated them.
However, the most telling part of the breakdown of non-spending is the publically-owned enterprises, which executed only 27.3% of the 1.89 billion euros they were allocated. This sector includes companies such as the rail transport firms Adif, Adif AV and Renfe, the air navigation management firm Enaire, and, to a lesser extent, such entities as the Barcelona Free Trade Zone Consortium (17.1 million), and the Port of Barcelona logistics operator Cilsa (28.6 million).