Merchant shipping sailing in to Balearic ports is paying nearly as much as four times the amount of port tax charged by mainland ports. According to a report published yesterday, the Balearic port authority last year took 1'569 million pesetas in merchant taxes and, according to the Balearic Minister for Public Works, most of the money raised is not reinvested in the Balearics. The study into the effects of the port taxes has been carried out by Vicenç Iborra, who accompanied by the President of the Majorca, Ibiza and Formentera Chamber of Commerce, Miquel Lladó and the Minister for Public Works, addressed a meeting about the costs of being an island region. Llado said that the high merchant port taxes are discriminating against the Balearics and also hampering the region's level of competitiveness. Ferrer said that the bulk of the money raised from port taxes in the Balearics is used to help write off losses in mainland ports. He added that while the current port management model in Spain is good for the state “it's very bad for insular regions because at the end of the day, it is the consumer who has to meet the brunt of the costs.”

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