In the Spanish parliament deputies voted in favour of an austerity budget aimed at slashing the public deficit.
Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s ruling conservative Popular Party used its outright majority to approve a series of amendments from the Senate to pave the way for the cuts.
A record saving of 27 billion euros is the aim. The government believes that is a way to guarantee the public deficit will be reduced from the 8.9 percent of the economic output last year to the new target of 5.3 percent.
“The approval of this budget, that takes into account correcting the public deficit, is the way to show that Spain, and in this case the Spanish government, undertakes to respect budgetary stability as a basic principle. It is a key to the strengthening of the euro and a means to regain confidence,” explained Spanish Finance Minister Cristobal Montoro,.
With Spain’s economy in recession, the International Monetary Fund has cast doubt over the country’s ability to cut its deficit to the government’s target.
New measures which will come into force in August mean patients will have to pay the full price for some prescription medicines for, “minor ailments” including codeine and some anti-inflammatories.