Spain's PM admits doubt over pledge to cut deficit

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The Independent Online

The Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy admitted yesterday that a promise to cut the embattled country's deficit to 6.3 per cent this year will be "very complicated" to meet.

While Mr Rajoy's Partido Popular (PP) is on course to achieve the cuts, which were agreed with the European Union, he conceded that it was "very complicated to reduce the deficit by 2.6 percentage points in the context of a recession".

In an interview with the Spanish newspaper La Razon, he also said that while up to this point he has not considered a rescue "necessary … if in the future I think it is in our interests, I will not have any doubts about turning to the [European Central Bank]" to ask it to buy bonds on the secondary market.

Mr Rajoy's comments came as a survey showed his disapproval rating among Spaniards has jumped to 71 per cent, up 20 per cent from March.

Nearly four in five of those surveyed for the poll said the political situation in Spain was negative.

Since the poll, published in the country's newspaper El Pais, took place, the PP has rowed back on an electoral promise by capping a rise in pensions to below inflation.

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