PREMIERSHIP: Conservative Mariano Rajoy is sworn in as Spain's new PM


PREMIERSHIP: Conservative Mariano Rajoy is sworn in as Spain's new PM
by Darius Kadivar

In a brief ceremony at the Zarzuela Palace presided by King Juan Carlos, the head of state, Rajoy stepped forward and read aloud the oath.






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New Prime Minister takes Oath of Loyalty to King and Pledges to respect the Constitution

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Mariano Rajoy elected Spain's prime minister :

Rajoy sets out Spain's new economic targets (Euronews):

Spain's incoming Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has set out a programme of deep cuts to fight the financial crisis.

Zapatero and Rajoy meet to finalise government handover details:






Conservative Mariano Rajoy is sworn in as Spain's new prime minister (CNN)

CNN : Conservative leader Mariano Rajoy was sworn in Wednesday as Spain¹s new prime minister, to begin work on what he lists as his top priority -- pulling the nation out of its deep economic crisis.

Ina brief ceremony at the Zarzuela Palace presided by King Juan Carlos, the head of state, Rajoy stepped forward and read aloud the oath.

He then left for the prime minister¹s compound to prepare for the public announcement of his Cabinet ministers, a closely-guarded secret, later in the day. They will be sworn in on Thursday.

Rajoy won a landslide election victory in parliamentary elections November 20. OnTuesday, he won the investiture vote in Parliament, and he then got a call from U.S. President Barack Obama.

A White House statement said Obama spoke with Rajoy to congratulate him and "to underscore U.S. support for his economic reform."

"The two leaders agreed on the vitality of the alliance" between Spain and the United States, the statement added.

The Obama administration previously offered its support for the economic reforms of the outgoing Socialist government, but that government's unpopular austerity measures and the economic crisis led to its defeat at the polls.

About 5 million people in the country are jobless. Spain has an overall unemployment rate of 21.5%, but it youth unemployment rate is a staggering 45%.

Ina speech to Parliament on Monday, Rajoy reiterated his campaign theme that fixing the broken economy, including growth and job creation, will be his top priority.

He said 16.5 billion euros (about $21.5 billion) will be cut from the budget next year to meet Spain's deficit reduction target. Critics say he has yet to explain where the deep cuts will be made, but Rajoy said he can't make the 2012 budget until his government takes power.

In the parliamentary speech, Rajoy promised to update pension payments, which were frozen under the Socialists amid much public outcry. But he said that would be the only spending increase in his new budget.

He said there would soon be labor market reforms to make Spain's workforce more flexible and competitive, and that there would be mergers and takeovers in Spain's troubled banking sector -- which holds a lot of bad debt from 750,000 unsold new homes that went up during the real estate boom but before the financial crisis and credit crunch set in.

Rajoy said most of Spain's national holidays that fall on weekdays would be observedon the closest Monday to improve productivity. Earlier this month, two national holidays fell on a Tuesday and a Thursday in the same week, and employers complained it was a lost week for worker productivity.

In an effort to help cash-strapped professionals and small businesses, Rajoy said they would not need to pay value-added tax on their goods and services until they collect back payments. Many of those debts are owed by government administrations at all levels, which are months in arrears in paying their suppliers due to the crisis.

Rajoy's first cabinet meeting is scheduled for Friday.

Recommended Readings:

Profile: Spain's Mariano Rajoy (bbc)

Spanish PM Rajoy names ministers (bbc)

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Once in the Canaries, usually the islands of Tenerife or Fuerteventura, they would fly to Britain, police said.

Fake passports were found at the home of the alleged ringleader, they added.

The Spanish authorities launched their investigation in February, with the arrest of a suspect attempting to board a flight from Tenerife to the UK with forged identification, reports say. The UK Border Agency was also involved in the case.

Thirteen people are said to have been arrested in Tenerife, three in Fuerteventura and six in Madrid.

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The Spanish government has warned it will defend its interests as a row with Argentina over the nationalisation of oil company YPF intensifies.

Promising a "clear and overwhelming" response, the government summoned the Argentine ambassador to Madrid to express its concern.

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Spain Austerity budget: Cuts to total 27bn euros this year

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Spain is cutting 27bn euros ($36bn; £22.5bn) from its budget this year as part of one of the toughest austerity drives in its history.

Changes will include freezing public sector workers' salaries and reducing departmental budgets by 16.9%.

The government says it will raise 12.3bn euros this year, aided by an increase in tax for large companies.

Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria said the nation was in an "extreme situation".

"Our top priority is to clean up public accounts," she said.

"This is a moment that demands serious efforts to reduce spending but also structural reforms to cause the economy to grow and create jobs."

But economists are questioning whether the cuts will be enough to satisfy Spain's European partners.

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Spain due to unveil tough budget

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The Spanish government is due to unveil what is expected to be one of the toughest budgets in its recent history.

Newly-elected Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has already warned the budget will be "very austere".

The global financial markets are increasingly concerned that Spain's debts are becoming unmanageable.

On Thursday, Spanish police clashed with protesters after a general strike was held to protest against labour reforms designed to cut unemployment.

Road, rail and air transport were all affected, with domestic and European flights cut to a fraction of their normal levels. 





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Spain police and protesters clash during general strike

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Spanish police have clashed with demonstrators on the day of a general strike called in protest at the government's labour market reforms.

Some of the marchers in Barcelona smashed windows and set rubbish bins alight. Police responded with tear gas and baton charges.

There were also protests in the capital, Madrid, and other cities.

Land and air travel were all affected, and domestic and European flights cut to a fraction of normal levels.

The centre-right government of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy will unveil measures on Friday aimed at saving tens of billions of euros and making it easier for businesses to sack employees.

It hopes the changes will cut unemployment which is currently the highest in the EU at 23%.

Nearly half of Spain's under 25s are out of work. 



Darius Kadivar

Your welcome Red Wine Jan

by Darius Kadivar on

Happy Yalda

Darius Kadivar

Iran launches Spanish TV channel

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Iran launches Spanish TV channel (BBC VIDEO)

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Red Wine


by Red Wine on

Good news for Spain and we are in Madrid to cover it. Rajoy has to work much, I like the ministers who have chosen by him, very professional and hard working.King is happy .

Thank you Dariush jan and Happy yalda :) .