Spanish European Popular Party Mep Theresa Jimenez Becerril warned the Maltese electorate that it wasn’t the right time to take the plunge and seek a change in direction when Malta’s economy is faring well and has one of the least unemployment rates in the EU.
She was speaking during a press conference held at the PN headquarters this morning.
Ms Becerril claimed that Spain’s former Socialist government, led by Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, hid the real situation Spain was and still is facing as a consequence to this day.
She emphasized that it’s easy to tell people what they want to hear and that’s exactly what the Socialist government did and now we have a even bigger burden as a result, referring to the high unemployment rate and unstable economy.
The Spanish Mep said that 50% of youths were unemployed alongside 26% of women who were out of work.
“All the necessities and luxurious things in life are gone. The situation developed because Mr Zapatero promised the earth and the electorate fell for it,” she said.
Unfortunately, she said, our government now has to tell the people that they don’t want to know which was affecting polls due to our unpopular but responsible decisions we are taking in an attempt to bring back Spain on its feet.
She pointed out that a strong economy and good rate of employment doesn’t happen through some magical formula, reiterating that it’s not the time for Malta to seek adventures because harsh consequences may follow.
Ms Becerril highlighted that a number of families didn’t have a breadwinner and were struggling and living off one family member’s pension.
She added that the situation that ensured in Spain, Italy, Portugal, Greece and Cyprus were enough to show the Maltese electorate where Malta could end up if one tries to take the plunge at the wrong time.
On a separate note, Dr Busuttil reaffirmed the PN’s proposals for youths and students. He said that the Nationalist Party will give a €500 grant to all 21-year-olds who want to discover another EU country in terms of culture.
Dr Busuttil added that the PN is committed to building a school every year between now and 2020, including the rolling out of tablet computers to all students and teachers.
He reiterated that the current 2,000 scholarships will be increased to 3,000 if the PN is reaffirmed in office and those under 25 years old will be credited income tax and National Insurance contributions if they take the plunge and start a new business.
Dr Busuttil reaffirmed that the current five per cent stamp duty on buildings transferred from parents to children will be removed and first-time buyers will benefit from stamp duty reductions on the first 150,000 euros.
He added that the PN is committed to keep reducing income tax bands, adding that everyone will see a reduction of tax from the current 35% to 25%, to be deducted over a period of three years.
Dr Busuttil reiterated that stipends will be increased pro rate according to COLA while adding that stipends for persons with a disabilty will be increased to help remove the burden of the extra costs they incur as a result of their disability.
He said that 25,000 new jobs will be created over the next five years, adding that this commitment has to be made becuase if not, the country would have a high unemployment rate by the time due to the number of students graduating from University, ITS and Mcast.
He said that the jobs will be created in the tourism, financial services, pharmaeutical, i-Gaming, science and research sectors, and last but not least, the manufacturing industry.
All the above-mentioned proposals, he said, could be made possible only because a PN government maintained and will continue to maintain its strong finances.