The artisans guild of the Pimem small to medium-sized businesses federation says that it is fed up with the "inexplicable tolerance" shown by Palma town hall to illegal selling. This has turned s'Hort del Rei into a "souk".
The guild's president, Maria Oliver, says that this week there have been more than one hundred unlicensed seller pitches between the Parc de la Mar and Born avenue. The city's police have apparently been doing nothing to prevent this. As well as the unfair competition that these sellers represent to taxpaying traders, the relations between the legal and illegal groups are deteriorating.
"They are laughing at us for paying taxes and being legal," Oliver explains. There are now even "irregular" sellers who have ceased to comply with legal requirements because no action is taken. "The situation has become unbearable. When we arrive to set up, the disputes start because they are occupying places to which we have been assigned." The craft market in s'Hort del Rei is over three days a week.
Despite meetings with town hall personnel, the councillor for consumer affairs, Antonia Martín (Podemos), has given the impression that nothing can be done. Oliver finds it particularly odd that there is a craft market for three days while for four days the area is occupied by illegal traders.
"It seems as though the town hall wants to promote the black economy, ignoring something as important as the maintenance of authentic Majorcan craftsmanship." Oliver wants there to be "genuine police control" of the illegal selling.