The Balearic Government yesterday unveiled some of the projects which would benefit from the tourist tax. Unlike them, I believe that as the money has come from tourism it should be spent on improving the industry and giving tourists a better stay. As far as I am concerned the farming industry is already doing quite nicely with the money it gets from Brussels and therefore it shouldn't be entitled to tax euros. Here are my 10 projects which in my humble opinion would serve the Balearics well and boost the tourist industry.

Project 1: Promotion: the Balearic Islands have hundreds of events which would be of interest to tourists but the problem is that they are not sufficiently promoted and therefore many tourists don't know that they are taking place. A centralised unit is needed to collate all this information and pass it on to the various Tourist Offices across Europe.

Project 2: if the Balearic government seriously wants to attract cyclists then cycle tracks need to be built alongside all the major roads and motorways.

Project 3: Walking distances need to be reduced at Palma airport, a form of inside terminal transport system needs to be set up.

Project 4: The creation of a committee consisting of officials from the local ministry for tourism, tour firms, travel agents from across Europe to decide on ways to improve tourism.

Project 5: A greater number of police officers, English and German speakers, on patrol in the resorts to keep at bay all those who prey on unsuspecting tourists.

Project 6: Organise a series of big events to boost tourism in the winter ranging from rock and pop concerts to football matches and other sporting events including a major golf tournament.

Project 7: Generally up-grade some of the resorts and quality of the environment.

Project 8: Act on complaints which are received from tourists who would be encouraged to complain through a call-centre which would be established.

Project 9: Offer free training for bar, restaurant and hotel staff.

Project 10: A public relations drive in the Balearics underlining the benefits of tourism.

These are projects which probably only scratch the surface but I suspect that they will make a major difference and enable the tourist industry to move ahead. I have stayed off larger projects because I suspect that the revenue from the tax will not be as big as initially envisaged. I think the ministry for tourism is trying to run before it can walk and this could have major consequences for the industry. Yes, I agree with local minister for tourism Celesti Alomar that some of the errors of the last 40 years need to be rectified. However, I don't believe that a major shake-up in tourist policy is needed. Seven million tourists can't be wrong. They just want to feel welcome and have faith in the local authorities. The Balearics are a fantastic place and all that is needed at the moment is a bit of common sense.

Jason Moore


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