>> It's been a tough year for Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, as he tries to stop Catalonia breaking away from Spain. In his end of year address on Friday, he said the new Catalan Parliament should hold its maiden session on January the 17th.>>
> I hope we can have a government in Catalonia as soon as possible, and that it is open to dialogue and able to relate to all Catalans.
>> That after Madrid took control of the autonomous region following an illegal referendum in October which lead to a declaration of independence by Separatist leaders. Pro independence parties secured a slim majority on the December the 21st election. But it may take months for a new government to emerge.
Many of their leaders are facing legal proceedings over their role in the independence declaration. Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont is in self-imposed exile, while another, Oriol Junqueras, is in custody. The December election raises the question of a return to power for Puigdemont. A party that wants Catalonia to remain part of Spain, Ciudadanos, gained the largest share of the popular vote, but it wasn't enough to govern by majority.
Rajoy is determined to solve Catalonia's crisis quickly. The wealthy region accounts for a fifth of Spain's economy. But the uncertainty has deterred tourists and prompted more than 3,000 companies including the regions two biggest banks to move their legal headquarters to another part of Spain.