Catalonia’s former separatist leader Carles Puigdemont yesterday urged caretaker Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez to be open to dialogue with the independence movement but declined to say if his party would back him in parliament.
The Regions bid to break away from Spain was at the heart of the election, which Sanchez’s Socialists won but without enough seats to have a majority on their own.
Puigdemont is still his party’s leading figure. Although he did not stand in the parliamentary election last month, he will run in the upcoming EU vote though.
Junts per Catalunya lost one seat in the election and now have seven lawmakers. In total, Catalan separatists won a record 22 seats in parliament, but their potential influence has been diminished by the Socialists’ strong jump in seats.

Spanish banks could see a rise in legal claims related to an historic method for pricing mortgages that could have a big impact on their profits, the Bank of Spain said yesterday.
Spain’s mortgage rate index was an alternative to the Euribor rate.
It was scrapped by the government in 2013 and The Supreme Court ruled in 2017 the index did not constitute an abuse of the market.
However, customers and lower courts challenged this decision at the European Court of Justice.
the Bank of Spain said a final decision by the ECJ was expected in the second half of the year, and that a ruling against the banks could cost them dearly.
Brokers estimate a worst-case loss for the banks of up to 10 billion euros.

THE JUDGE of the Court of Instruction in Valencia has decided to prosecute the ex-regional President, Francisco Camps and a number of PP members who held power at the time of alleged offences in connection with financial and administrative irregularities.
The alleged crimes occurred during negotiations for and the construction of the Formula One circuit and the holding of motor races in the city.
The project apparently cost the Valencian authorities approximately €89 million.
The deal was initially for seven years and the first race named the ‘European Grand Prix’ was held on the circuit in 2008 but was discontinued after the 2012 race.
The circuit area has now reverted back to public use.

Spanish Grand Prix
Ferrari are bringing forward to this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix an engine upgrade originally scheduled for Canada in June as they battle the early-season domination of Formula One champions Mercedes.
Mercedes have won the first four races one-two with five times world champion Lewis Hamilton and his Finnish team mate Valtteri Bottas.
Ferrari were quickest in pre-season testing at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya, however.
The Spanish Grand Prix is the first round of the European season with teams close to their factories again and set to bring some substantial upgrades.
The race is on Sunday afternoon from 10 past 3