DEAR SIR

47 Million Euro deficit accumulated since 2003 as reported by Humphrey Carter

HOW unfortunate that a new incumbent to this important ministry must bear the burden of what is actually a bankrupt business! Joana Barcelo has 45 Million Euros to spend this year, but her ministry is already in the red to the tune of 47 Million! A failure to control tax payers' money on this scale is not only unpalatable, it smacks of total incompetence!

The very fact that this particular part of the Balearic government has been largely unsuccessful in attracting tourists to the Islands and has thus experienced a noticeable decline in associated revenue, infers a certain level of unawareness. Notwithstanding the financial crisis, other countries have managed to gradually increase their share of this important income. Consequently, the spotlight must focus on those who are administering tax payers' money and patently failing to achieve any appreciable success.

Questions concerning proven experience in this critical market and a historical record of successfully handling multi-million Euro budgets must certainly be directed at those employed to effect this type of business.

It is refreshing that Joana Barcelo, the recently appointed minister for tourism, has declared her intention to invoke strict controls on expenditure this year. Surely, this statement declares that the controls were not in place before, so we must logically ask, “Why weren't they?” Additionally, she intends to be more transparent about where and how the money is spent. Again we must question why weren't those responsible for such vast sums of money transparent in the past? Furthermore, there is a more worrying fact that is uncovered in this report and that is the 47 million Euro deficit! How did this accumulate? Why was it permitted to accumulate over such a long period? Which department was monitoring this unforgivable waste of tax payers' money and who is responsible? Surely, someone in government noticed that the department was not achieving its budgetary goals?

This mind boggling waste of tax payers' money is a thread that permeates through many facets of government, which unfortunately gives the reader the impression that those entrusted with these funds, do not have the essential experience or business acumen.

However, elections are in the offing, which provide an ideal opportunity for the voters to demand total accountability on behalf of each and every minister and the departments they control! Gerry Mulligan

DEAR SIR
Improving Tourism in Majorca

I refer to the Home News Page in Thursday's MDB and in particular the 45 million euro budget, for promoting Tourism, on the Island.
During a 2 week stay I was over charged in a cafe in Andratx Town, short changed in a bakers shop in the Port of Andratx and twice had my food order “lost” in a restaurant in Palma in successive weekends.

Perhaps the Authorities should spend some of the Budget Funds on staff training and customer relations within the Tourist Industry.

Yours sincerely, David Somerville