Fears over the introduction of the tourist tax.

10-10-2015Kai Foersterling

Business reaction to the announcement is expected to show almost total opposition to the tax. President Armengol has called on the hoteliers to “work together” on what she acknowledges is their “disagreement.” Armengol is insisting that there will be “dialogue with everyone,” but when mostly everyone in the tourism industry takes issue with the tax, how will the disagreements be reversed?

Here are just some of the views that have been expressed by business associations
Carmen Planas, president of CAEB, the Balearic confederation of business associations. The tax would be a “mistake” as it “would reduce the competitiveness of our economy.” The head of CAEB in Minorca, Joan Melis, has said that a tax increase “does not improve the economy or create employment.” For the Ibiza branch, Joan Bufí has observed that “unless it is collected at ports and airports, it will be a totally unfair tax as not everyone will pay. If we consider that there is an illegal accommodation offer of 30 to 40%. what will happen with a tax? It will seem like a punishment for those tourists who stay in traditional establishments.”

Antoni Abrines, the president of Aviba, the Balearic travel agents association, believes that his members will be adversely affected. “The Balearics is a sun-and-beach destination. We are not a destination like a city such as Barcelona. In our case, if a family comes for a week, it will be hit in the pocket and so it is possible that a different destination will be looked for where there isn’t a tax.”

The president of the Balearic Association of Agrotourism, Miquel Artigues, has said that the current tourism boom is one that has been “borrowed” on account of the political situation in other countries. “If we take this into account, we do not believe that the application of a tax will be opportune. What the government should be pursuing is better financing (for the Balearics).” He feels that, if there is to be a tax, it should be invested directly on the environment.

While the views of the Majorcan hoteliers are well known, their counterparts on the other islands are likewise in disagreement. Luis Pablo Casals, the president of the Minorca Hotelier Association, has said that “it is not known what damage will be done.” Nevertheless, he is willing to listen. “We want to study what they present, and we would like that they listen to us and take into account business realities.”

Juanjo Riera for the Ibiza and Formentera Hotelier Federation points out that back in July his federation was voicing its opposition. “We would oppose the regularisation of apartments in residential buildings (for tourist rent) and the eco-tax. Now they want to regulate this tourist use of residential accommodation and apply the eco-tax.”


There are, though, some business sectors which have expressed support
Irene Perelló of Aptur, the association for tourist rentals, says that the association is in favour of the tax and is another which wants it to be directed at the environment. “When people know why they are paying a tax and can see how it will help the environment, then it is much easier to accept.”

The president of the association for small wine producers, Andreu Oliver, believes that the tax is “necessary” in order to compensate for the “public service and environmental cost that is generated by tourism and which is borne by everyone.” Bartomeu Rosselló of the Majorca Business Circle says, from his personal point of view, that he is convinced that tourists will not stop coming because of the tax. He is critical of the stance of the hoteliers. “If large Balearic chains can be distributed worldwide and be in countries, 80% of which have some form of tax, why do they object in their homeland?”

Comments

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Steve Riches / Hace over 6 years

It's so blindingly obvious to anyone who has followed events in Mallorca for many years, that this tax is doomed to failure and will be a huge blow for tourism. It's sad to think that the actions of these dim politicians will reduce income for hard-working local people. That's the tragedy. I love this island and wish it to prosper.

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Sean Dobson / Hace over 6 years

You can be sure of two things,the first is that the tourist tax will insure that more people opt for all -inclusive and the second is that whatever they are forced to pay in tourist tax,especially families,that amount of money will no longer be spent outside their hotels so stand by for more bar and restaurant closures,fewer bus rides to other resorts,less spending on tourist trips,water parks,boat trips et al,all of which will see unemployment and poverty sour,nothing like shooting yourself in the foot,is there.?

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Anne Richardson / Hace over 6 years

One of the reasons for the popularity of AI is that people like to pay upfront so they don't have to work out how much meals and snacks will cost them and carry shedloads of cash.unforeseen expenses are avoided and this tax is just the kind of thing they want to avoid. In most cases, for people working to a budget it will just come out of what they would otherwise have spent on drinks, gifts etc. The benefit to the economy is therefore impossible to quantify and my guess is a lot of it will go in administration.

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Michael stokes / Hace over 6 years

More unemployed more bars and restaurants closed more crime while politicians line their pockets

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Andrew Ede / Hace over 6 years

Good evening, Brian, this is Andrew Ede on behalf of the website. The two euro rate is due to be the maximum and applied to five-star hotel accommodation. No guideline has been given yet regarding self-catering (non-hotel) accommodation, which is just one of many uncertainties being caused by the tax. It may prove to be lower, while there is also nothing being said about a possible maximum number of days for which the tax will be charged (if any). There is much to yet be ironed out, therefore, but I quite understand your concerns and your comment that the payment for the tax (whatever it might prove to be) would be a loss for local businesses.

Thanks for comment. Please keep watching the website, and we'll do our very best to bring you latest developments regarding the tax.

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Brian Challis / Hace over 6 years

I am planning a family holiday to the Island next August. We are 2 adults and 2 children, one being over 14. If this proposed tax is introduced at €2 per person per day It would cost us €84 for our 2 week break. We prefer to stay in self catering accommodation and we holiday on a fixed budget, therefore a tax of €84 will ultimately be forfeited by local businesses to whom we would give patronage. We love Mallorca, this will be our 12th visit, but the thing is, we are now considering an alternative destination next year as a direct result of this proposed tax. I wonder how many other potential tourists are also considering going elsewhere?

+11-

Davies / Hace over 6 years

It is reassuring to know that the UK has not got all the stupid politicians

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