Photo: King Juan Carlos Christmas Address
Spain’s King Juan Carlos on Monday defended the idea of making austerity compatible with economic growth and emphasized that the country is “part of the solution to the global crisis.”
In his traditional televised Christmas address, which this year was broadcast for the first time on the Royal Household’s online channel on YouTube, the king devoted a large portion of his remarks to reflecting on the “serious economic crisis” Spain is experiencing.
After emphasizing that Spaniards are going through “one of the most difficult periods” in the country’s recent history, he said that “today’s sacrifices will guarantee tomorrow’s well-being in a reasonable period of time, such that the protection of social rights may be ensured.”
“The Crown is very much aware of the effort and the sacrifice that the citizens are making with fortitude; no effort in life is futile and the ones that are being made now will not be either,” the king, who urged Spaniards to respond to his words with a demonstration of confidence, said.
For the Spanish economy to grow again “we have to put our accounts in order and, at the same time, generate stimuli for the creation of wealth,” a point on which the king said that “the first stimulus that will get us out of this crisis is called confidence.”
Confidence in oneself will, in turn, generate the confidence of the financial markets in Spain with the conviction that, just like during the country’s transition to democracy after the Franco dictatorship, Spaniards will be able to overcome current difficulties if they act with “generosity, talent and creativity,” the king said.
“Spain is part of the solution to the global crisis and must be a protagonist in the decision making of the great international forums,” the monarch said.
He also said that Ibero-America “is a fundamental part of us, just as we are also (a fundamental part) of it.”
“The same goes for Europe. We have to keep working with the European Union to overcome the purely national visions and strengthen the bases of solidarity” with which the integration process is advanced, King Juan Carlos said.