Palma.—The Balearic government yesterday set up an eco-tax which large hypermarkets will have to pay when setting up business in the Islands. The government said that such a measure will bring in between 7 and 10 million euros a year.

The Economy ministry has also confirmed that not only will Sunday opening be legal all year round in Palma in areas which are largely frequented by tourists, but also that petitions from those municipalities which want to apply for the same facility will be welcomed by the Balearic government.

Director for Commerce and Business, César Pacheco said that seasonal sales should be allowed to be launched at times of the year when it is most advantageous to the Commerce sector.

In terms of hours worked during the week, the government has said that establishments can remain open up to 90 hours, the current norm is 72 hours. Businesses can open on up to a maximum of 10 public holidays a year (2 days more than before). All these details are included within Balearic bylaw reform to adapt to State norms which are to be approved today by the regional government.

Another feature of Commerce law change, said Pacheco yesterday is that retailers will be allowed to acquire items which are expressly for promotions.
New measures are to be taken to strengthen inspections to ensure retailers, hypermarkets and department stores are conforming to the law over product safety and sale throughout the Balearics.

Other securities for companies are bylaws guarding against unfair competition and black market activity.
The eco-tax is designed to compensate for the environmental damage created by massing of cars at sales points. The amount will be levied according to the square metreage of the business concerned.

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