Spain aims to avoid economic damage to Catalonia through direct rule

MADRID - Spain's central government aims to avoid further economic damage to the wealthy northeastern region of Catalonia due to its secession bid by exercising direct rule, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy told parliament on Wednesday.
More than one thousand firms have moved their legal headquarters out of Catalonia to avoid volatility caused by the independence bid, according to the companies registry, and the uncertainty has prompted Madrid to cut economic forecasts.
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