General strike in Spain prior to the adoption of an austere budget

The Spanish are a general strike Thursday to protest against labor reforms and austerity measures the government of Mariano Rajoy, who plans to give another twist to them in the state budget for 2012 to be presented on Friday.

“It’s the right answer (…) to a brutal reform our industrial relations framework,” said Ignacio Fernandez Toxo, general secretary of the union Workers Commissions (CCOO), chief convener of mobilization along with the other exchange of opinion, the General Union of Workers (UGT).

The unions understand protest a labor market reform, adopted on 11 February by the conservative government of Mariano Rajoy to relaunch job creation in a country with an unemployment rate of 22.85% record, which punished especially to young people under 25 (48.6%).

The promoters of the protest, however, think that only cheapens the dismissal and “will not solve any crisis of employment, the economic crisis.”

The strike “will not serve to fix the problems in Spain,” Rajoy said on Tuesday from Seoul, convinced of the goodness of the measures taken so far by the government (tax increases, budget cuts) to try to reduce the public deficit Spanish 8.5% of GDP which ended 2011 to 5.3% this year and boost the economy.

“There has been no government in the first 100 days has made many reforms like this, probably because it also receives a general strike,” he said Rajoy, who came to power last December.

The importance of unemployment has, however, uncertain, after the last general strike in September 2010, recorded limited success.

In the capital, for the first time in more than 15 years has ruled the right regional government and unions have reached a services agreement, so that circulate on average 30% of meters and city buses, and 25 % of intercity buses.

The healing work at the level of a holiday and will be open schools and kindergartens.

Nationally, in rail transport circulate 30% of commuter trains and 20% of long distance trains, while in the air, Iberia Airlines, Air Nostrum and Vueling have canceled an average of 60% of its flights.

Iberia has canceled 222 flights (65%), Air Nostrum other (202) and Vueling has canceled 190 links (66%). See stock market closed today.

The mobilization comes a day before the government approved on Friday the budgets for 2012 that are advertised rigorously austere, and will be watched very closely by the Eurogroup finance ministers meeting in Copenhagen at the same time.

The great object of government is to reduce the public deficit to 5.3% Spanish agreed with the European Union (EU), for which, according to various estimates, will require an adjustment of between 41,500 million and 55,000 million euros.

The government has already approved budget cuts by 8,900 million euros and a tax increase by 6,300 million, so keep looking for money to close the gap may choose to increase some taxes or cut public spending further.

“I will advance what is going to approve the 30 because it is not closed but is definitely the way to raise taxes on consumption,” said Rajoy, without giving further details.

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