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Spain's economy minister says it's 'very clear' that Catalan independence is not going to happen

Key Points
  • "It's very clear the independence of Catalonia is not going to take place," Luis de Guindos told CNBC Monday
  • His words come after a selection of high profile Spanish companies have voiced concerns about recent tensions
Catalan independence ‘illegal’ and irrational,’ Spanish economy minister says

Luis de Guindos, the Spanish economy minister, poured cold water on the possibility of Catalonia gaining independence and said citizens don't need to worry about having their deposits in Catalan banks.

"It's very clear the independence of Catalonia is not going to take place," he told CNBC Monday.

"It's illegal, irrational, detrimental to the Catalan economy. We have seen the decisions taken by a lot of corporations."

His words come after a selection of high profile Spanish companies voiced concerns about recent tensions with some opting to move their headquarters out of the region. De Guindos said these announcements sent a very clear message to the politicians of the regional government of Catalonia.

He added that despite the uncertainty created by the Catalonia crisis, Spain will keep growing.

Spain's Minister of Economy Luis de Guindos
Saul Loeb | AFP | Getty Images

De Guindos spoke as finance ministers from the euro zone arrived at a regular Eurogroup meeting in Luxembourg. The ongoing political instability in Spain is raising eyebrows across the entire euro zone and will likely be a hot topic for the finance ministers.

Earlier in the day, Ricardo Mourinho Felix, Portugal's secretary of state for the finance ministry, told CNBC that the Catalonia crisis should be a concern for the whole 19 nations that share the single currency.

"It's not only a problem for Portugal, it's an issue for the euro area and Europe as a whole," he said in Luxembourg.

"We are also concerned about the situation as devoted Europeans that believe in the European project and it's very important to have a close monitoring," he added.

Catalan crisis is an issue for Europe, Portuguese politician says

Portugal has been following the situation closely given that Spain is its biggest trading partner and political uncertainty there could impact business. Mourinho Felix told CNBC that it is time to speak, to discuss and to find an orderly solution to Catalonia's wish to become independent.

Catalan President Carles Puigdemont said he will address the regional parliament Tuesday evening, though it's unclear if he will declare independence then.

Catalan crisis an issue for Spain to deal with, Belgian finance minister says

Back in Luxembourg, some euro zone finance ministers called the Catalan crisis a "domestic" problem.

Johan Van Overtveldt, Belgium's federal minister for finance, told CNBC: "That's for Spain to take care of internally and everybody should show some mutual respect."

Meanwhile, Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem also said that he considered it a domestic issue. "You may not agree with that but that's my position," he said.