by Humphrey Carter

With rumours rife that central government could scrap the 50 percent travel discount for residents in the Balearics next year as it struggles to drag Spain out of recession, the Balearic Minister, or rather the politician who occupies that post but actually does very little, Carlos Delgado, will today be quizzed over what he exactly knows about Madrid's intentions and where he stands on the potential axing of the travel discounts.

Madrid, through its austerity measures, has managed to reduce the powers of regional governments, which are largely responsible for Spain's huge deficit, so it will be a chance to see if the Balearic government does have any power to fight the region's corner or does Madrid now have the ultimate say.

This could be Delgado's time to shine.
As far as the British travel industry is concerned, the region has functioned without a proactive Ministry for Tourism since the Partido Popular returned to power and that this year, there has been hardly any contact with the Ministry here in Palma at all.

So, this could be Delgado's moment because losing the travel discount will isolate the Balearics more than ever and will deal tourism, business and the airline industries a serious , perhaps fatal, blow.

So, let us see if the Balearic government is up for a fight, or is it going to roll over for its grand master in Madrid?