By Humphrey Carter

THE President of the Balearics, Francesc Antich, yesterday met with local banking chiefs to explain the 1'000 million euro investment package he unveiled on Wednesday to halt the recession and get the region back on its feet by creating over 30'000 jobs.

Since the recession bit the Balearics 18 months ago, the banking sector has been slow to release loans and financing to the commercial sector but yesterday, the Balearic financial sector gave the government its full backing and pledged to cooperate in the drive to “revive the local economy, maintain jobs and help create new ones”.

Antich, accompanied by key members of his cabinet, also pressed the banks and financial organisations on the need for them to begin releasing money to the business community, local councils and the private sector.

A new line of mortgages for first time buyers is going to be unveiled today, for example.
Emerging from the meeting, the President said that the talks were also the first chance the government and financial sector has had since the start of the year to pinpoint and discuss the main challenges the region is going to face in 2010. “One of the primary objectives is to rebuild consumer and economic confidence. “This year is going to be another difficult one but we're confident that we will begin to see some green shoots by the end of 2010,” he added.