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The buoyant nature of the Balearic Economy is being reflected in the number of firms registering with social security. During the summer the number of tourist businesses was at its highest level since 2009: almost 12,000 compared with the 10,500 six years ago. This Business activity confirms both the fact that Tourism is one of the main engines of the economy and the record nature of the 2015 tourism season.

These businesses are varied, and so they include far more than hotels. Among others, they cover travel agencies, transport services, accommodation activities, and bars and restaurants. It is the latter category which is the most numerous, with 7,000 establishments having been registered with social security in the third quarter from July to September.

Overall in this quarter there were more registrations than in the previous two, reiterating the fact that it corresponds with the greatest level of tourism activity and also the fact that, despite economic crisis, there has been a third-quarter increase in the number of tourist businesses over the past six years. With the number of businesses going up, so there have been more jobs, with the best employment figures since the start of the crisis having been reached.

Carmen Planas, president of CAEB, the Balearic confederation of business associations, naturally looks upon this trend positively. “It is a further indication of economic reactivation,” she notes, but sounds a warning in saying that for there to be consolidation of economic recovery, “it is essential that public administrations provide legal certainty and develop measures that encourage business competitiveness”. It is the businesses which are creating jobs, she adds, and “only by improving our competitiveness can we foster new investment and, therefore, promote stable and quality employment”.

Despite the good figures for the summer months, during the rest of the year there are fewer tourist companies signed on with social security. By comparison with the almost 12,000 of high summer, there were 8,471 in the first quarter from January to March.

But the big problem is still the labour market laws which allow for short-term, part-time employment which suits the tourist industry employers but not the employees and was one of the hot topics in the general election debate between the four main parties on Spanish TV on Monday night. While the ruling PP claims to have created hundreds of thousands of new jobs, the opposition parties pointed to the fact that the majority where short term and that the country is suffering a brain drain as qualified young people flock overseas.