By Jason Moore
PROBABLY Majorca´s most lucrative asset is Palma airport. It raises millions of euros for the Spanish economy every year;in other-words it makes a small fortune. If a sort of profit-sharing system was to be introduced with the local authorities having some ownership it would go a long way to resolving the age old problem of Balearic funding. For many years now the islands have been involved in a major dispute with Madrid over funding. Islanders pay far more to Madrid than the islands get in state funding from the central administration. At the moment the local government is trying to secure important funding for the islands from the central administration. At the moment talks are going well but who knows. Also, for the time in many years the same party is in power in Madrid and in Palma. This is an unusual state of affairs for the islands which has not helped its funding case. But returning to the airports if the islands were given a minority stake then I am sure that all concerned would benefit. The airport is vital for the development of the tourist industry and the local authorities should be able to have their say. Also, the profit sharing system would bolster local coffers. This idea has been suggested for many years. The previous administration even talked about the Balearic government having overall control. I understand that this could be an exceptionally difficult state of affairs and I sincerely doubt that the proposal would receive much support in Madrid but it is an idea which should certainly be considered. Perhaps next time Balearic leader Francesc Antich goes to Madrid he could discuss the issue with PM Zapatero.

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