The Spanish government must decide for itself whether or not to ask for a bailout, but spending cuts are inevitable no matter what, European Commission Vice President Joaquin Almunia told Onda Cero, Spain's number two radio station on Wednesday.
''The government must weigh the pros and cons [of a bailout], but cuts must be made. There is no other way to leave the crisis behind and grow on solid foundations,'' said Almunia, who is a Socialist and a Bilbao native. ''We have no other choice. We can no longer save ourselves at the expense of others. There is a European budget, whose job it is to finance territorial and social cohesion policies.'' Germany may be the strongest and most cash-rich European economy, but it has no interest in keeping other eurozone countries down, explained Alumnia. ''There are intertwining interests, because German businesses have important investments in other EU countries,'' the commissioner said.
Per current EU treaties, a secessionist Catalonia would automatically leave the eurozone, at least at first, Almunia said. He called on the Catalan and the central Spanish executives to ''make a joint effort in reaching a space of dialogue to find common points,'' Almunia said.