Spanish Constitution of 1978 (annotated)/Part VII

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Congreso de los Diputados, pages 58–62


Economy and Finance

Section 128

Social function of wealth1, 9.2, 33, 38, 40.1, 130, 131 C1. The entire wealth of the country in its different forms, irrespective of ownership, shall be subordinated to the general interest.

Public initiative2. Public interest in economic activity is recognised. Reserve to public sectorEssential resources or services may be reserved by law to the public sector especially in the case of monopolies. Likewise, State intervention in companies may be imposed when the public interest so demands.

Section 129

Participation in Social Security1.1, 9.2, 23, 33, 38, 40, 41, 128, 131 C1. The law shall establish the forms of participation of the persons concerned in Social Security and in the activities of those public bodies whose operation directly affects quality of life or general welfare.

Workers' participation in firms2. The public authorities shall effectively promote the various forms of participation in the enterprise and shall encourage cooperative societies by means of appropriate legislation.

They shall also establish means to facilitate access by workers to ownership of the means of production.

Section 130

Development of certain economic branches1.1, 9.2, 40.1, 128, 131, 138 C1. The public authorities shall promote the modernization and development of all economic sectors and, in particular, of agriculture, livestock raising, fishing and handicrafts, in order to bring the standard of living of all Spaniards up to the same level.

2. For the same purpose, special treatment shall be given to mountain areas.

Section 131

Planning of general economic activity1.1, 9.2, 31.2, 33, 38, 40.1, 128, 138, 149.1, 131. The State shall be empowered to plan general economic activity by an act in order to meet collective needs, to balance and harmonize regional and sectorial development and to stimulate the growth of income and wealth and their more equitable distribution.

Special Economic Council2. The Government shall draft planning projects in accordance with forecasts supplied by Self-governing Communities and with the advice and cooperation of unions and other professional, employers' and financial organizations. A council shall be set up for this purpose, whose membership and duties shall be laid down by the law.

Section 132

Public-domain and communal property33, 38, 128, 149.1.22 C1. The law shall lay down the rules governing public and communal property, on the basis that it shall be inalienable, exempt from prescription and seizure, and it shall also provide for the case of disaffectation from public purpose.

Public property2. Assets under the State's public property shall be those established by law and shall, in any case, include the foreshore beaches, territorial waters and the natural resources of the exclusive economic zone and the continental shelf.

State's Heritage and National Heritge3. The State's Domain and the National Heritage, as well as their administration, protection and preservation, shall be regulated by law.

Section 133

Fiscal power9.1, 31, 142, 149.1.14, 153 d), 156, 157 C1. The primary power to raise taxes is vested exclusively in the State by means of law.

Fiscal power of Self-governing Communities and local authorities2. Self-governing Communities and local Corporations may impose and levy taxes, in accordance with the Constitution and the laws.

3. Any fiscal benefit affecting State taxes must be established by virtue of law.

4. Public Administrations may only contract financial liabilities and incur expenditures in accordance with the law.

Section 134

State Budget65.1, 66.2, 72.1, 75.3, 88, 133 C1. It is incumbent upon the Government to draft the State Budget and upon the Cortes Generales to examine, amend and adopt it.

Budget to be annual and comprehensive2. The State Budget shall be drafted annually and shall include the entire expenditure and income of the State public sector and a specific mention shall be made of the amount of the fiscal benefits affecting State taxes.

Time-limit for submitting draft Budget for Parliament133-135 SO3. The Government must submit the draft State Budget to the Congress at least three months before the expiration of that of the previous year.

Extension of time-limit4. If the Budget Bill is not passed before the first day of the corresponding financial year, the Budget of the previous financial year shall be automatically extended until the new one is approved.

Increase of expenditure or cutting of revenue5. Once the Budget Bill has been adopted, the Government may submit bills involving increases in public expenditure or decreases in the revenue corresponding to the same financial year.

Limits to initiative in budgetary matters111, 126 SO6. Any non-governmental bill or amendment which involves an increase in appropriations or a decrease in budget revenue shall require previous approval by the Government before its passage.

Limits to scope of Finance Bill7. The Budget Act may not establish new taxes. It may modify them, wherever a tax law of a substantive nature so provides.

Section 135

Public borrowing and loans to the State149.1.14, 157.1.e) C1. The Government must be authorised by law in order to issue Public Debt bonds or to contract loans.

2. Loans to meet payment on the interest and capital of the State's Public Debt shall always be deemed to be included in budget expenditure and may not be subject to amendment or modification as long as they conform to the terms of issue.

Section 136

Auditing Court66.2, 81, 117, 127, 153 d) C1. The Auditing Court is the supreme body charged with auditing the State's accounts and financial management, as well as those of the public sector.

It shall be directly accountable to the Cortes Generales and shall discharge its duties by delegation of the same when examining and verifying the General State Accounts.

Submission of all State accounts to the Auditing Court2. The State Accounts and those of the State's public sector shall be submitted to the Auditing Court and shall be audited by the latter.

Annual report of Auditing Court to Parliament199 SOThe Auditing Court, without prejudice to its own jurisdiction, shall send an annual report to the Cortes Generales informing them, where applicable, of any infringements that may, in its opinion, have been committed, or any liabilities that may have been incurred.

Members of Auditing Court3. Members of the Auditing Court shall enjoy the same independence and fixity of tenure and shall be subject to the same incompatibilities as judges.

4. An organic act shall make provision for membership, organization and duties of the Auditing Court.