Council of Ministers

Government approves urgent measures to guarantee smooth development of 25th United Nations Conference on Climate Change to be held in Madrid

Friday 8 November 2019

The Council of Ministers approved a Royal Decree-Law adopting urgent measures for the organisation in Spain of the 25th United Nations Conference on Climate Change (COP25) which had originally been due to be held in Santiago de Chile. The government also approved a Royal Decree to set up the Organisation Committee tasked with planning, organising and implementing the actions necessary for its development.

The Acting Minister for the Ecological Transition, Teresa Ribera, argued that "Spain feels honoured to have merited the trust placed in it by the United Nations and the Chilean Presidency" to host this conference, which will take place in Madrid from 2 to 13 December.

The Government of Spain, remarked Teresa Ribera, is already working "closely" with the Secretariat of the Climate Change Convention and the Government of Chile in its organisation, as well as in coordination with representatives of the Regional Government and City Council of Madrid.

To be held at IFEMA

Pool Moncloa/JM CuadradoAssembly of the installations will begin on 17 November at IFEMA. The conference will occupy a total of seven pavilions with more than 100,000 square metres of space and an additional area of a further 13,000 square metres of convention centres and meeting rooms.

Teresa Ribera explained that there will be a blue zone, managed by the United Nations, which will host official activities and negotiations on the three international climate treaties: the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. The acting minister confirmed that there will be a representation of Heads of State and Government at the inaugural session.

In addition, the so-called green zone, aimed at civil society, will include a pavilion to present and debate actions of interest and a multiuse space for cultural events. Teresa Ribera argued that this area "for meetings and to raise awareness" is open for participation and is one of the aspects on which the summit will place the greatest emphasis.

Precisely to foster this participation by the private sector, the Royal Decree-Law approved on Friday declares the Climate Summit to be an event of exceptional public interest, a classification that allows a special regime on tax incentives for patronage to be applied.

25,000 visitors scheduled

Teresa Ribera stressed that another important aspect of the event is the attention to the close on 25,000 scheduled visitors, from almost 200 countries. The organisation has established a system for central reservations and the selection of hotels and is working to guarantee mobility and healthcare, among other matters, with the aim of ensuring that the summit can proceed with all normality and that Madrid can become "the climate capital" for a few days, concluded the acting minister.

Combined Agricultural Insurance Plan 2020

Pool Moncloa/JM CuadradoThe government approved the 41st Combined Agricultural Insurance Plan for 2020, with a provision for the State Agricultural Insurance Company (Spanish acronym: ENESA) of 216.43 million euros. The subscription of this insurance is voluntary, and the policy-holder covers, on average, 58% of the premium, while the other part is provided publicly by the State and the regional governments.

The Acting Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Luis Planas, invited professionals from the world of agricultural ,livestock rearing and forestry to sign up to this insurance since, he claimed, "we are facing a period with a high rate of claims as a result of climate change and atmospheric phenomena, that are becoming all too recurrent and extreme". In fact, to October this year, compensation has been paid out for the sum of 550 million euros, basically due to damage from drought and the DANAs recorded in recent months.

Luis Planas highlighted that the new plan includes 44 lines of insurance, with different types of cover and risks to provide the system with greater flexibility and allow "each policy-holder to contract the policy they feel is best suited to their needs".

The acting minister described the agricultural insurance system as a "fundamental pillar of Spanish agricultural policy", and the most effective tool to manage the risks to their holdings and to guarantee their economic viability.

586.7 million euros for the European Space Agency (ESA)

The government approved an agreement to increase Spain's contribution to the European Space Agency (ESA) by 586.7 million euros in the period 2020-2026.

Isabel Celaá highlighted that the ESA guarantees the return of this contribution through contracts to Spanish companies, which will allow the industrial fabric to be further developed, competitiveness to be enhanced and technological specialisation to be improved. "Spanish industry could thus sign up to new programmes such as lunar exploration and become leaders in new scientific missions".

The Acting Government Spokesperson also announced that on 27 and 28 November, the Ministerial Council of the ESA will meet in Seville, under the Spanish Rotating Presidency, where it will approve new commitments on spending by its Member States.

Claims lodged before Constitutional Court to nullify two resolutions adopted by the Board of the Regional Parliament of Catalonia

TPool Moncloa/JM Cuadradohe Council of Ministers approved the lodging before the Constitutional Court of two enforcement proceedings against two resolutions adopted by the Board of the Regional Parliament of Catalonia.

The first, of 29 October, admitted for its passage through the Regional Parliament of a motion on the exercise of the right to self-determination. The second, of 5 November, rejected the applications made by other parliamentary groups to reconsider the admission of the first motion.

Isabel Celaá remarked that by taking these actions, "the Regional Parliament seeks to manifest its clear intention to continue with the independence process and its attempt to achieve the independence of Catalonia".

The Acting Government Spokesperson recalled that the Constitutional Court has already declared previous resolutions on the right to self-determination to be unconstitutional, and the Board of the Regional Parliament has been urged, on numerous occasions, to stop initiatives that mean evading or ignoring its rulings.

Posthumous award for researcher Margarita Salas

The government approved proceedings to be initiated to grant the Gold Medal for Merit in Research and University Education to the scientist and researcher Margarita Salas, who died earlier this week.

Isabel Celaá regretted the death of someone who, in her words, was "the most important scientist in Spain's history", and expressed her hope that "new generations of Spanish scientists pick up the baton of her teachings to overcome the hurdles that she shed light on and detailed".

Electoral arrangements for 10-N

The Acting Government Spokesperson claimed that everything is ready so that almost 37 million constituents with the right to vote - of which 226,000 are new voters - can express their choice "with "all guarantees of normality" in the general elections to be held on Sunday, 10 November, the 15th elections of Spanish democracy.

The arrangements for the elections have a budget of 136 million euros, with 92,000 Guardia Civil and National Police, regional and local police officers working on Election Day, with the IFEMA facilities in Madrid hosting the national centre for data publication.

Non official translation