Defiant Madrid signs bank loan without Cabinet’s authorization

Regional premier González thumbs nose at Popular Party colleague at Finance Ministry

In what appears to be a clear sign of defiance toward Finance Minister Cristóbal Montoro, the Madrid regional government on Monday signed a 10-year loan for 250 million euros with Santander Bank in order to pay its suppliers.

The loan was signed without the Cabinet's authorization and will increase Madrid's debt. The Popular Party (PP) central government has been urging all regions to trim down what they owe.

Since July, regional premier Ignacio González — also of the PP — had been asking the finance minister for permission to issue debt to the tune of 689 million euros to pay suppliers. But Montoro blocked the request, saying that the central government had already come up with a fund for the regions to tap into for such payments.

Madrid officials believed that the PP central government wanted them to sign up to the fund so that it could control the region's finances.

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