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STAFF REPORTER PALMA

THE economic crisis is making itself evident in Palma through the number of retailers, bars and restaurants which are closing, local and regional business associations said yesterday.

The small to medium-sized businesses association of Majorca, Pimeco has calculated that 15 percent of traders on the island have closed as a result of falling income and Balearic Business Association CAEB said that figures for the food and drink industry were similar.

CAEB President Pilar Carbonell said that the principal reason for the closures were the knock-on effects of the economic crisis but that it was the total smoking ban introduced at the start of this year which had been the “straw which broke the camel's back.” But it is not just in Palma where people are going out of business, she said.
Outlying areas of the Island and other parts of the Balearics are equally affected, said Carbonell.
A case in point she said, are retailers along the Paseo Mallorca in Palma. In the past few months alone, Carbonell claimed, several business have closed including “Can Ignasi de Pollença”, the “Can Mulet” bar, the “Picos de Europa” restaurant and wedding dress shop Janin Novias.

What is particularly noticeable about this group of closures, said Carbonell is that all the premises are located within a few metres of one another on a main street in the centre of Palma.

It's representative of what is happening to the commercial sector right around the region, she claimed.