Palma.—After days of concern over the future of the entitlement of Balearic residents to a 50 percent discount on domestic air and maritime travel, the President of the Balearics, Jose Ramon Bauza, proclaimed yesterday that the travel benefits are safe and will not be tampered with.

Bauza made the announcement after talks with the Minister for Development, Ana Pastor, in Madrid, stating that Pastor had given him her word that the current system will not be changed.

Nevertheless, Bauza pledged to continue working in order to make sure that the Minister lives up to her word and does not introduce fixed discount rates as mooted by central government last week.

Buaza, heading the Balearic delegation to Fitur, which was opened by Crown Prince Felipe and his wife Princess Letizia, said that the Minister for Tourism will be holding talks with leading tour operators and airlines over the coming days about the forthcoming summer season which, at the moment is looking very encouraging despite another slump in domestic tourism. He will also be showing off the eco-friendly Balearic stand which has been designed in association with Microsoft who has used the very latest technology to construct the pioneering exhibition stand which features virtual tours of the Balearics.

The stand has cost the Balearic Ministry for Tourism 288'000 euros, 81 percent less than last year's stand but is expected to have far more impact on potential clients and visitors.