Staff Reporter

PALMA
THE adaptation of Balearic leisure ports to the Ports Law will mean substantially more income for the Balearic Government.
The Government's income of 400'000 euros from these ports will increase to between 6 and 12 million euros, according to the calculations of the Balearic Ports department.

This money will be used to improve the infrastructure of ports directly managed by the Balearic Government.
The Balearic Ports Law, approved in July 2005, offers the leisure port concession holders of the 28 ports not directly managed by the Balearic Government the opportunity to renew their concession for another 30 years, on condition that they adapt their infrastructures and services to the minimum established by the Law and pay the new taxes set by the Government.

The executive vice president of the Balearic Ports department, Monica Pozuelo, confirmed that the taxes which the concession holders pay have never been updated, in spite of the fact that the law says this should be done every five or ten years.

She also confirmed that the oldest concession dated from 1964, whose taxes she described as “derisory”.
In order to get a new concession contract, it is necessary to have a technical report done confirming that the port infrastructures conform to the new law, and this can be put on public display if necessary. The updating of the taxes will be derived from the property tax made by the Balearic Government on the leisure port, and will be five percent of this tax.

The Balearic Ports department confirmed that they would not authorise the rise in taxes to be directly collected from the users of these ports but they should be included in the running costs. “This will reduce the concession holder's profits a little”, said Pozuelo. At the deadline to apply for a new concession, 26 of the 28 concession holders had applied. The two exceptions are the leisure ports of Colonia de Sant Pere and Cala en Bosch (Minorca) as their concession holders consider that they are not profitable enough. The leisure ports which have applied to renew their concession, and thus adapt their infrastructures to the law, also have the option to end their concessions once the rise in Government taxes and the price of converting their infrastructures are known. The vice president of the Balearic Ports department said that at the moment there are six concessions which have ended, 16 will end before 2018 and the other six after that time.

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