"We'll keep bringing taxes down," says regional finance minister

The regional minister during his speech on Wednesday.
The regional minister during his speech on Wednesday. / Salvador Salas
  • Juan Bravo Baena gave his perspective on the Junta de Andalucía's policies at a forum organised by SUR in Malaga on Wednesday

The regional minister for Finance, Industry and Energy, Juan Bravo Baena, reassured an audience in Malaga on Wednesday that the Junta de Andalucía regional government would keep lowering taxes, "as that is our philosophy". He said it would keep doing so until Andalucía stopped being in the upper tier of regions for the highest taxes.

In a forum organised by SUR and sponsored by Fundación Unicaja, Bravo highlighted the work being done to reduce regional taxes paid at notary on legal deeds, carrying on the policy started with the reduction in inheritance tax between fathers and children. He didn't mention any possible extension of this tax reduction to include uncles, nieces and nephews and siblings.

Bravo did however say he would lower the income tax band that is levied regionally to bring it down to the national base.

He explained that the rules for the regional budget for next year were "limit debt, control expenditure and zero deficit", which meant organising the regional finances, "just like any family does... not running up more debt than it can afford to pay back and not having out of control spending".

He criticised the former Socialist regional government, saying that "everyone in Andalucía, each one of you, your children and even in some cases your grandchildren, will have to pay 25 euros a year for the next 20 years to return the six-billion-euro debt run up between 2008 and 2010.

Next year's budget

Juan Bravo promised to maintain and "hopefully increase" budgets for the three biggest spending departments of the Junta- Health, Education and Social Services - where 200,000 of the regional government's 253,000 employees work.