Staff Reporter
THIS year is going to be a good year for builders, said the Director of the Balearic Building Association, Manuel Gómez. The main reason for this good news are the new projects that are starting in 2005 to renovate old housing and rundown areas.

Activity in this sector was slow during 2002 and 2003 and Gómez hopes that these renovation projects, as well as building new housing, will help to boost revenue this year.

In addition, Manuel Gómez said that the Balearic tourist sector, “one of the biggest clients for the Association”, is recuperating, as many hotels are spending more on modernising and renovating hotel buildings from October until March or April next year.

These comments were made at a press conference, where the Director and the President of the Balearic Building Association, Sebastià Pastor, presented the 2004 accounts. These figures confirmed that 2004 was a good year for builders, as there were 35.39 percent more building projects in comparison to 2003, which increased profits by 47.52 percent with a total of 1.37 miilion euros made in the year. However, building works for the tourist industry decreased by 31.91 percent, which only had projects worth 78.7 million euros.

The Director of the Building Association said that a large portion of all these projects is being carried out this year, which means that the majority of the aforementioned accounts relate also to 2005. For this reason, the Balearic Islands need “a good couple of years” to be able to recuperate the fall of activity that was experienced in 2002 and 2003, he added. All these new projects ”do not have to be for new building works only”.

However, he noted that “if the Balearic economy carries on like it has been and demand does not change, more new housing will need to be built, because there are many people who live here and all of them need a roof over their heads”.

Pastor was asked if he could confirm that builders are paying supposed commissions to different political parties, and replied that “he could not confirm or deny” this situation. He added that “we should all assume that these business people are being honest”.

Other news announced yesterday was a new advertsing campaign that is going to be unleashed in order to celebrate the 600 year anniversary of the Association. The campaign will focus “on the position of builders in society” highlighting constructed hospitals and schools.


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