Yesterday’s presentation of Podem Illes Balears.

24-04-2015

The Balearic branch of the left wing party Podemos, Podem Illes Balears, has included reintroducing the tourist tax in its manifesto.Podemos, “We can” was founded in the aftermath of the 2011–12 Spanish protests against inequality and corruption.
 It is considered by some as a left-wing populist party that seeks to address the problems of inequality, unemployment and economic malaise that followed in the wake of the European debt crisis.
Podemos has called for a renegotiation of austerity measures and seeks to curtail the Treaty of Lisbon.
Podemos is the second largest Spanish party by number of members after the Partido Popular; it became the third largest party within the first 20 days it allowed membership, with 100,000 signing up in that period, and it currently has over 350,000 members.
Yesterday, the Balearic branch of the party presented its manifesto for the forthcoming local election and  included in it is a reintroduction of the tourist tax which the former Socialist coalition government tried to enforce but miserably failed and seriously damaged the image of the Balearics.
However, what makes Podemos’s proposal different from that of the Socialists is that the tax would be paid on  arrival or deperture at Palma airport, similar to the way in which the vast majority of tourist taxes are charged in other countries around the world.  Where the Socialists slipped up was that the tax was only charged to hotel guests, making it discriminatory and that is one of the main reasons it failed.
Podemos, if they find themselves in a position of political king making after the election, would want to see the tax  introduced on a level playing field.
 And, Podemos would call the tax and environmental and innovation tax, although it would be a tax on tourists, but those would be the two areas in which the funds raised would be invested.
The Secretary General of Podem Illes Balears, Alberto Jarabo, and the party’s political secretary, Laura Camargo, presenting the manifesto, stressed that residents would be exempt from paying the tax because, quite simply, they are already being taxed enough, if not too much. During the presentation, held in the Parc de Sa Riera, the party leaders explained that the tax would be between one and two euros and may even be added to the price of the air ticket, therefore reducing any hold ups and confusion on landing at Balearic airports.

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