Historical Summary of the Catalan Fiscal Plundering


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Historical Summary of the Catalan Fiscal Plundering

Source: Fundació Catalunya Estat

Date: February 2011.

Published in: News & Politics
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Historical Summary of the Catalan Fiscal Plundering

  1. 1. Historical summary of the Catalan fiscal plundering
  2. 2. When did the plundering begin? (1)  The fiscal plundering of the Catalan territories begins with the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1715) at the beginning of the C18th when the victors, the Bourbon monarchy, imposed special taxes on the Catalan territories (Valencia, Balearic Islands and Catalonia) who had sided with the House of Austria.  The Spanish state has never had a single, balanced, fiscal system for all of Spain; when the troops of Philip V finally conquered the Catalan territories, instead of applying the Castilian fiscal regime, they imposed a special one for the militarily occupied lands.  Since the C18th the Catalan Countries have always paid a lot more in taxes than Castile. (Source: Converses amb Oriol Junqueras – Bernat Ferrer : Viena Edicions 2011) 7
  3. 3. When did the plundering begin? (2)  In Catalonia in the C18th the church had to pay taxes, while the Castilian church didn’t. If the Catalan clerics paid taxes, then you can imagine what happened with the farmers, the urban middle classes, merchants, etc.  This unjust fiscal treatment has been maintained in many ways to the present day.  On the other hand the Basque Country has a special fiscal treatment (the Charter) because the Basques sided with the Bourbons in the War of Succession, and as a reward Philip V maintained the special charter (Los Fueros), which exempted them from paying taxes.  Therefore, the Spanish War of Succession is a key episode in the process which has given rise to the modern day Spanish state and its highly discriminatory fiscal system. (Font: Converses amb Oriol Junqueras – Bernat Ferrer : Viena Edicions 2011) 8
  4. 4. The taxes multiplied by twenty  The impact of the Bourbon repression and the abolition of the Valencian Royal Charter (els Furs) was profound. Even the proBourbon Valencian people complained about the abolition of the Charter.  Before, the contribution of the Valencian kingdom to the king was voluntary and there were even some years when they gave nothing.  When they did pay the amount was between 18,000 to 35,000 pounds per year. Philip V imposed a new permanent fiscal system in Valencia and unified all the different taxes in one, l’equivalent.  In 1714, l’equivalent was established at 637.000 pound every year ! This new tax system was later applied to Catalonia and the Balearic Islands. (Font: SAPIENS – Especial 1714 Nr.108 del 2011) 9