When the tourism secretary of state, Fernando Valdés, was in Minorca last week, the island was registering 35 active cases of coronavirus in total and not a single person in hospital. Minorca's population, just under 100,000, provides a very easy calculation of the rate of infection that foreign governments apply in deeming a destination unsafe. It is currently eight new cases per 100,000 over a seven-day period.
The Council of Minorca was calling for there to be safe corridors, especially with the UK, which vies with the Spanish market as providing most of the island's tourists. Establishing corridors now would only do so much, but they might offer Minorca some relief from the carnage of summer.
In terms of active cases, Minorca was comparatively unaffected at the time of the first wave. The maximum was 68 at the end of the first week of April. The second wave produced far more - a maximum of 202 early in September, since when the number has come down dramatically.
There has consistently been an argument for Minorca being treated differently to the other islands, the spike in cases in late August and early September having been something of an exception. But the island continues not to be treated differently. It should have come out of lockdown earlier than Majorca and Ibiza, but it didn't. It should have had its own pilot tourist scheme, but it didn't. Now is a time to prove that the island isn't being neglected after all.
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