Anger with the Spanish government over the suspension of the proposed investment in Barcelona airport - but also annoyance between the partners in the Catalan government of Pere Aragonès. Catalan vice-president and head of infrastructures Jordi Puigneró has accused Pedro Sánchez's executive of "unilaterally breaking the agreement" for the expansion of Barcelona's El Prat. "Once again, disloyalty from the Spanish government, which has not complied with the agreements we reached in Madrid with the minister," said the vice president, while also criticizing his own government partners in ERC, who had spoken out against it. "I have told the Catalan president: there are protests that we could have avoided and which did not help the goal of reaching a consensus," he warned.
Puigneró, who was responsible for the agreement reached with the Spanish ministry for the expansion of the airport, appeared at a press conference in Brussels shortly after the Spanish transport minister, Raquel Sánchez, had appeared to announce the Spanish executive's decision to suspend the planned investment of 1.7 billion euros.
Advised a few minutes before
Ten minutes before Raquel Sánchez's press conference on the decision, the Spanish minister had informed the Catalan vice-president of its airport about-turn and had set out her complaints about critical tweets from president Pere Aragonès, as well as government spokeswoman Patricia Plaja, who on Tuesday said that members of the Catalan government might attend the demonstration called on September 19th against the airport expansion.
In his response from Brussels, where he was taking part in a meeting of the Junts parliamentary group, Puigneró regretted the decision of the Spanish government affecting a fundamental infrastructure in Catalonia and denounced that "the Spanish state is once again not complying in Catalonia". “How do they want us not to be independent if they don’t invest or allow investment?” he asked.
The vice-president defended the project again and assured that it protected the La Ricarda lagoon, and guaranteed the high speed train connections with Reus and Girona.
Irritation and anger with ERC
But not only that, he also expressed "irritation and anger at the confusion generated by some in Catalonia in recent days." Although he did not specify the object of his complaints, he reffered to "frivolity and populism that have once again done great harm to Catalonia". When asked if he was referring to statements made by his coalition partners ERC and by the Catalan government, to which the Spanish minister had already referred during his appearance, he acknowledged that he had indeed conveyed his annoyance to president Aragonès.
Puigneró, who expressed his confidence that these differences did not need to affect the dialogue table meeting scheduled for next week, also questioned whether the Sánchez government might have changed its mind to avoid conflicts with its own Podemos partners, who were opposed to the proposal.