Staff Reporter
A REPORT presented by the Department of Applied Economics of the Balearic University confirms that foreign tourists would be prepared to pay up to two euros a day for visiting protected areas of special natural interest in the arichipelago. Following a series of inverviews at Palma airport with tourists who were on the point of leaving the island, the report revealed that the majority of the visitors included in the study would be prepared to pay up to two euros, on each day of their stay on Majorca, in order to have the choice of visiting protected areas. The study is based on the supposition that access to some areas of the island, amongst them the peninsula of Formentor, might become dependent on the collection of a tax. It is deduced from the research that the tourists would pay, on each one of their visits to the islands, a total of between 29 and 33 euros for the privilege of visiting places of special natural interest. This influx of funds would suppose an annual income in the region of 138 million euros. Annually, nearly two and a half million tourists visit some area of natural habitat of the island during their stay on Majorca. Authors of the study, Paula Aguiló and Antoni Riera, conclude that natural areas play an important part in promoting tourism in the Balearics, and confirm that were such areas to be destroyed, the value of the archipelago as a holiday destination would be considerably reduced, resulting in heavy losses in the industry. The report therefore advocates making the most of natural spaces in the Balearics, which boast five areas of natural parkland and 83 Natural Areas of Special Interest.

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