Joan Gual at the meeting with small retailers' representatives.

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PIMECO, the small to medium-size business association has held its first meeting with the new president of the Balearic Ports Authority, Joan Gual de Torella, and has come away "relaxed and full of confidence".

The small retail sector in Palma had been worried by talk of plans to develop a new commercial complex in the Moll Vell, the old port where the boat show is held and where the new building, housing restaurants, a few shops and offices, has been built. PIMECO maintained that any such a development would pose a threat to traditional small businesses in the city centre and therefore damage their interests.

However, Gual de Torrella explained that the new plan for the port is focused on improving and covering port services for the merchant shipping and cruise sectors, not the creation of a commercial centre anywhere within the port. Plans to also build a hotel near the old port have also been shelved for the time being.