By Humphrey Carter

THE Balearic Minister for Tourism, Miguel Nadal, yesterday said “extraordinary times calls for extraordinary measures” after his so-called “Nadal decree” of new incentives and controls for the tourist industry was approved by the Balearic government.

The primary aim of the new law is to enable and help hotels to expand and increase the quality of their establishments while controlling tourism development and raising extra funds for the regeneration of the popular resorts.

The government is also going to make a fresh attempt to get a grip on the illegal holiday accommodation sector and is offering property owners the opportunity to pay a flat rate of 4'000 euros per bed to regulate their situation. The Ministry for Tourism estimates that the olive branch to the illegal accommodation sector will raise between 70 and 90 million euros per year, all of which will be handed over to the Council of Majorca to be reinvested in local resorts.

Next Thursday, the Council of Majorca will approve the creation of a new committee to handle the regulation of “hidden” accommodation, as the Ministry calls it. The Councils of Minorca and Ibiza are expected to follow suit over the coming months.