Spain's King Juan Carlos expressed his concern about the lack of jobs in his country and the fact that many youths have to look for work abroad, but expressed confidence that Spaniards can regain their confidence and overcome the crisis.

In an interview broadcast on public television Friday, the day of his 75th birthday, the monarch also said he feels "in good shape, full of energy and, above all, with hope going forward to face the challenges we all have ahead of us."

"One of the things that concern me most and is in the minds of many Spaniards is the lack of jobs, which means that millions of families cannot make a decent living, which in turn means that young people must leave Spain to find work, to find what they can, to work abroad, it hurts us a lot, it hurts me a great deal," the head of state said.

Another matter that upsets the king is "the intransigence that brings with it extremism and perhaps policies that are not very helpful, policies of disruption," a veiled reference to the pro-independence sentiment in the Catalonia region.

The king said that, in the 37 years of his reign, he has the satisfaction of "all of us having achieved this modern, democratic and unified Spain together," but added that "we still must achieve a Spain with greater equality and justice."

About the future, he perceived "an intention to go forward in spite of all that is happening," an allusion to the economic crisis, and said he believes his son and heir, Prince Felipe, is very well prepared to reign. EFE