The land ministry is to inspect assets belonging to banks, investment funds and large real-estate agents as it suspects that they may be concealing empty properties. If this is the case, then they would be in breach of legislation obliging them to register properties so that the government can make flats available at affordable rents.

The housing law gave large-scale property owners three months in which to comply with the registration. That period has now ended, and 859 properties have been registered. The government believes that this is well below the real figure. It estimates that there are more than 3,000.

So far, 45 of these large property-owning entities have listed empty dwellings. The government suspects that there are many more and is particularly interested in what investment funds have.

Minister Marc Pons makes clear that the government has no particular wish to become involved in renting out properties. It would much prefer that empty dwellings are put on the market and sold or rented out directly. Meanwhile, the land ministry has started to review the 859 properties and determine what, if anything, may need doing to them.

The legislation established that there can be fines up to 90,000 euros for each empty property that is not registered. The apparent concealment has led to a situation in which there are only thirty registered properties in the whole of Ibiza.