"Independencia": Catalonia could break away and take 20% of Spain's economy with it

Artur Mas, head of the Catalan government, has announced a snap regional election on November 25. If his nationalist CiU party win, a referendum on Catalan independence is expected to follow shortly after, according to Gilles Moec, co-head of European economic research at Deutsche Bank.

Giner told CNN that a victory for Mas and CiU should be considered a certainty. He said: “The socialist party in Catalonia is in disarray. He [Mas] knows that he’ll win hands down.”

However, Xavier Sala-i-Martin, a professor in economics at Columbia University, says that Mas is simply “following the crowd” on calls for sovereignty.

He said: “Up until September 11 his strategy was to go to Madrid and ask for a better financial deal or “fiscal pact” as he called it. I guess that the massive demonstrations convinced him that his people no longer want a better financial deal from Spain. They want independence. And he joined the bandwagon… Mas doesn’t lead. He follows.”