Miquel Ensenyat, the president of the Council of Majorca, says that financing for the Balearics is “a matter of survival”, his remarks coming during a first meeting between him and the president of the Majorca Hoteliers’ Federation, Inmaculada de Benito, attended also by the councillor for finance, Cosme Bonet.
The Council and the hoteliers agreed that financing should be a priority and that they have a common interest in pressing central government over increased funds for the Balearics - a matter the new left wing coalition government has made a priority and has already asked for a meeting with the Prime Minister to discuss the matter.
A new system of financing, added Ensenyat, is the “great unfinished business for the Balearics”, and it affects municipalities and island councils alike.
De Benito referred to infrastructure needs in the context of funding - such as improvements in road conditions and safety to further promote cycling tourism - as well as to a requirement for better systems of tourist information.
Ensenyat criticised past failures in planning. “In Majorca there has always been a lack of planning both in the short and long term regarding issues that affect us.
“Now, we want to work together (with the hoteliers) as stakeholders.”
De Benito made a veiled reference to the plan for a tourist tax by observing that there needs to be a fight for fair financing of the islands before new taxes that may harm competitiveness are introduced.
On planning issues for which the Council has responsibility, she expressed a willingness on behalf of the federation to participate in the drawing up of PIAT - plans for intervention in the tourism sector - as well as actions in resorts that are declared mature (obsolete) zones.
With regard to the transfer of certain tourism responsibilities to the Council of Majorca from the regional government, as reported by the Bulletin yesterday, she stressed the importance of ensuring that this is done effectively and without generating administrative burdens or creating duplications with other branches of government.