Unions Press King on Cuts

The leaders of Spain’s two main labor unions — the Unión General de Trabajadores and Comisiones Obreras — met with King Juan Carlos today amid the nation’s ongoing economic turmoil.

Meeting at Zarzuela Palace.
© Casa de S.M. el Rey / Borja Fotógrafos

The leaders expressed their opposition to a recent flurry of budget cuts, which they say are hurting workers and the needy.

The King has spoken in favor of European cooperation and integration. However, he has stressed the need for a balanced approach to dealing with the debt crisis.

The labor leaders expressed their discomfort with further EU intervention in Spain’s economy, which may come with painful strings attached.

Pay Cut for King, Prince

King Juan Carlos has decided to cut his own salary by 7.1 percent to conform with the latest austerity measures announced by the Spanish government.

Prince Felipe and the head of the Royal Household will also see a cut, as will other members of the Royal Family, according to various media outlets.

King meets with Socialist leader Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba.
© Casa de S.M. el Rey / Borja Fotógrafos

Also, in a change of events, Infanta Cristina and her children will join Infanta Elena and Queen Sofia on vacation at Marivent Palace in Palma De Mallorca. Media reports have indicated that the Queen wanted the family together for at least part of the summer.

Infanta Cristina’s husband, Duke of Palma Iñaki Urdangarin, who is under investigation for corruption allegations, is not expected to attend. The Royal Family has been keeping him at a distance.

The Royal Household announced that King Juan Carlos will meet with Balearic officials and Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy during his own visit to Marivent Palace. Media reports also indicate that Queen Sofia will attend the opening of the London Olympics by herself.

Prince Felipe will be on hand for the awards ceremony of the annual King’s Cup regatta in Mallorca. He will also preside over a meeting of foreign ministers at Almudaina Palace, also in Mallorca, to discuss the future of Europe.

King Juan Carlos meeting with King’s Cup organizers at Zarzuela Palace last week.

Tomorrow King Juan Carlos leaves for a trip to Russia.

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More Cuts in Royal Household

The Royal Household is planning cuts to protocol and personnel expenses to conform with national austerity measures, El Pais reported today.

The Spanish daily newspaper said the Household was hoping to meet or exceed the new budget’s 2 percent reduction in Royal expenses.

The King’s representatives are also in talks with ministries, which offer support, and Patrimonio Nacional, which manages royal palaces, aimed at cutting costs.

The Crown costs the Spanish state about 8 million euros a year. The King receives about 293,000 euros in salary, a significant portion paid in taxes.

La Granja Palace, Segovia