Catalonia is voting on its future in Spain – and Madrid is worried
The red and yellow striped flags of Catalonia bobbed about giddily as Lluis Recoder delivered his message: despite the crisis gripping Spain, Catalans could be as rich as Scandinavians.
“If we were a European state we would be seventh in Europe in per capita income, after Denmark and Sweden,” the Catalan nationalist and regional government minister declared, to an enthusiastic response. His figures are based on wealth calculations that can look skewed. (Struggling Ireland is, for example, richer on a per capita basis than thriving Germany). But they are seen here at least as proof that Catalonia – a region of almost eight million people – could be not just viable but also wealthy if it were to separate from Spain.
“It is very viable,” said Artur Mas, the Catalan president, in an interview with the Guardian. “What is not viable is the current situation.”
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